Konrad Technologies - We test autonomous vehicles in virtual reality!

by Clemence Sop

Konrad Technologies GmbH and SET GmbH to work hand in hand in the area of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), sensor fusion, and Hardware in the Loop (HiL)

Due to continuously rising demands on mobility and autonomous driving, integrated and automated testing solutions are needed for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). The combination of ADAS sensor fusion with a Hardware in the Loop (HiL) testing system is necessary to enable a new level of innovative, automated testing solutions in the automotive space. Therefore, the companies Konrad Technologies GmbH, based in Radolfzell, and SET GmbH, based in Wangen im Allgäu, are joining their knowledge and skills to develop custom testing systems in the area of driver assistance systems. Together, the extraordinary expertise on ADAS sensor fusion of Konrad Technologies GmbH and on HiL by SET GmbH form a complete, flexible set of tools from design to development, implementation, and validation to production. These synergies allow optimal solutions to be offered to shared customers.

The agreement provides for a collaboration between the two long-time, award-winning National Instruments Alliance partners both on technical as well as strategic activities. Both companies are successful system providers for innovative testing solutions in the automotive industry – from the initial idea all the way to end-of-line (EOL) tests. The focus is increasingly on National Instruments products, which are extended with their own products and solutions to enable high-performing and high-precision system solutions. Based on the in-depth experience of both companies, the focus of solution design is on considering the Total Cost of Test (TCoT), which allows a significant reduction thereof through suitable standardization efforts.

To test modern ADAS sensors efficiently, Konrad Technologies GmbH has developed target simulators for camera, radar, and LIDAR sensors, which have been successfully used in the field by clients in the past years. The software for radar target simulation by Konrad Technologies offers the opportunity to simulate typical driving scenarios in a laboratory environment. This allows a controllable and reproducible testing framework, which is a prerequisite for an objective and independent performance analysis of the sensor system. Based on the National Instruments VST, a Vector Signal Transceiver, Konrad developed an editor that allows the user to create complex scenarios that can be automatically reproduced.

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With the aid of Hardware in the Loop (HiL), individual parts of an integrated system can be simulated and tested in a virtual environment in real time. SET GmbH has specialized on HiL for a number of years and was thus named the Hardware in the Loop Specialty Partner by National Instruments. HiL simulation allows for an efficient assessment of systems while reducing testing time and costs and increasing reliability by replacing complex, real tests. In regard to ADAS sensor fusion, the complexity lies in integrating target simulators, classic analog, and digital signals possibly including signal conditioning, control and evaluation of vehicle busses CAN and FlexRay, as well as the consideration of a car model. The HiL environment guarantees the parallel execution of all individual components in real time.


Frank Heidemann, Managing Director of SET GmbH:

The fusion of a multitude of sensor information, more intelligent control devices, and the customers’ desire for better assistance systems and even autonomous driving presents our customers with interesting but also growing challenges. With Konrad Technologies, we have found a partner that, with their in-depth know-how of ADAS sensor systems, represents the perfect complement to the HiL skills of SET GmbH. Together, we can offer our customers HiL solutions from ADAS sensor systems all the way to closed sensor fusion HiL test beds and, therefore, provide users the optimal tools for solving the challenges of the future. In addition to the technical connection, our company values are an excellent match, making it fun to work on solving these problems together with Konrad as a reliable and flexible partner.


Michael Konrad, Managing Director of Konrad Technologies GmbH:

SET, with its long-standing expertise in Hardware in the Loop (HiL), is the perfect partner for continuing development in sensor fusion simulation systems. Future ADAS systems will be increasingly complex and, thus, require complex systems for efficient and safe validation. Time to market is a crucial factor, providing our customers the necessary time and according engineering. I’m especially excited about collaborating with SET, because Konrad Technologies and SET have similar philosophies and have both been successful for many years.

Konrad Technologies GmbH

Konrad Technologies GmbH is a global company that offers testing and production solutions as well as turnkey solutions in the areas of electronics manufacturing, high frequency technology, as well as optics. Founded in 1993, Konrad Technologies is active in six countries at nine locations and has 150 employees, ensuring its proximity to customers. Individual testing solutions, such as function tests, in-circuit tests, ADAS testing systems, optical camera testing systems, as well as complete production lines, are developed in-house and manufactured for the automotive, medical technology, consumer electronics, semiconductors, as well as aerospace industries. In particular, the collaboration with National Instruments as a Platinum Alliance Partner allows for constant innovations such as the joint development of automotive radar validation systems.

SET GmbH – Smart Embedded Technologies

SET GmbH is an innovative technology company that specializes in developing semiconductor reliability testing systems, HiL and function test systems, as well as electronics development and manufacturing for the automotive, aerospace, and semiconductors industries. As Hardware in the Loop Specialty Partner of National Instruments, SET GmbH offers qualified project management, from the definition of system requirements to hardware, mechanical, and software development and production, to operational start-up of finished systems. Since its founding in 2001, SET GmbH as grown continuously and now has over 45 employees at three locations in its main business as well as another roughly 40 employees within its subsidiary, SET Power Systems GmbH (SPS).

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