An autonomous car is a great example of a highly distributed dynamic system, where component objects continuously make real-time local decisions based on system-wide constraints and approximate global state. DDS evolved to specifically address this type of system, and RTI has become a trusted expert assisting the innovators of future autonomous cars.
The ease of integration and flexible, reliable, and fast publish-subscribe data model of the RTI Connext DDS middleware are uniquely suited to addressing many of the toughest challenges posed by autonomous cars:
- Vehicle subsystem integration and control, spanning driving control, safety, infotainment, and diagnostic functions
- Inter-vehicle interactions, for collision avoidance and optimized travel experiences
- Tracking and control functions, for fleet management, traffic monitoring and management, crisis management, and government agency coordination
- Sensor and camera data aggregation at millisecond speeds
- Local and remote feedback loops
- Reliable communications over unreliable channels (for example, wireless, cellular)
- Ability to operate within redundant environments (intelligently delivering only one copy of data)
- Rapid time to market for safety-certifiable infrastructure, using RTI Connext DDS Cert
DDS Map to Autonomous Car Requirements
Unlike other connectivity middleware, DDS emerged more than 10 years ago to address physics-speed connectivity requirements. Today, DDS remains the only middleware capable of satisfying the most stringent requirements including:
- Reliability. Within an autonomous car, even five milliseconds of downtime can be a disaster. DDS implements natural redundancy to ensure continued operation.
- Performance. For the system components that need millisecond or microsecond response, DDS provides fast peer-to-peer
- Integration at scale. Autonomous cars integrate many applications and deal with thousands of addressable data items during normal operation. Data-centric DDS eases complex data flow within these types of large-scale systems.
To minimize overhead, the DDS publish-subscribe model delivers:
- Fine control of quality of service (QoS) parameters including reliability, bandwidth control, delivery deadlines, liveliness status, resource limits, and security
- Explicitly managed communications data model, with a choice of connection types
- Data centricity, with inherent understanding about the contents of the information being managed and shared
- Inherent automation (no hard-coded interactions between applications and devices)
- Device discovery (easy add-on of new devices without any configuration changes required)
Compared to traditional point-to-point communications, DDS offers a superior databus with plug-and-play simplicity, scalability, and an architecture that can evolve while maintaining exceptional performance levels. Scalability and integration capacity of DDS are also instrumental in enabling a car’s connections with other vehicles and their own environments, including external systems such as traffic monitoring.