PERSIST: Dominating the complexity of software development

31. March 2016 | Software & Testing Solutions

Embedded software development is highly challenged by system complexity as well as variant diversity. Intelligent system and software architectures are required to provide timely and safe control features to the end customer. A modular function library plays a key role in mastering these challenges. FEV has developed a software solution to these challenges that can be applied throughout the entire development process.


Incomplete standards

FEV has been collaborating with global car manufacturers and suppliers to standardize functions according to the Automotive Open Software Architecture (AUTOSAR) consortium. Nonetheless, significant standardization gaps have been detected when developing series software in a real world project context. Basic layer functions only partially comply with requirements for diagnostics and safety, not to mention the integration of other systems (e.g. infotainment). In parallel, supporting tools need to be extensively adapted to profit from standardized tool interfaces. Finally, application-specific control features are heavily underspecified and still very specific to each manufacturer and supplier. The problems of complexity, variability, and compatibility remain unsolved.

Object-oriented design of control functions

PERSIST is the consequent approach to the consistent application of the AUTOSAR architecture concept at the application layer. Architecture guidelines were defined on the basis of vast experience in a diverse number of series software projects.. These guide the developer from requirement definition to implementation. Control functions are reflected in an object-oriented approach where the system is divided into its physical properties and software is compiled based on a library that depends on the system properties. The PERSIST library includes functions for both gasoline and diesel engines, transmissions, and various configurations of electrified powertrains, including battery management.

Performance and efficiency proven in projects

“We have applied PERSIST within over 20 projects over the past 5 years, enabling us to build up a function library that enables us to dominate complexity and increase testability,” explains Rainer Paulsen, group vice president of electronics and electrification. This has become a basis on which multiple drivetrain control projects have been successfully realized. Additionally, FEV’s experience across projects with varying maturity targets from prototype up to highly safety-critical systems can be efficiently provided to each developer. FEV’s process and automation framework, ASSIST, also includes variant and release management using a database-centered approach.

“Through PERSIST we not only enable complexity handling but also the management of rapidly growing numbers of variants and efficient reuse of control functions over multiple projects and applications,” says Paulsen.


Less time and costs through reuse: The PERSIST toolchain enables tailor-made embedded software services within one common and reusable framework for all development steps.