Synopsys To Acquire German Automotive Software Tools Firm

Article By : Nitin Dahad

Synopsys to add automotive virtual prototyping to portfolio with acquisition of German simulation and test tools provider QTronic.

Synopsys said it is buying QTronic GmbH, a German provider of simulation and test tools for automotive software and systems development. The EDA vendor said the acquisition will accelerate Synopsys’ delivery of a comprehensive automotive virtual prototyping solution for system and software development throughout the automotive electronic supply chain.

While terms of the deal were not disclosed, Synopsys said subject to customary closing conditions, including foreign regulatory filings, it is expected to close in the company’s fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019. When completed, it said the acquisition will broaden Synopsys' automotive product portfolio for automotive Tier 1 and OEM companies and add a team of highly experienced engineers to accelerate technology development and customer deployment.

Manoj Gandhi, general manager of the Synopsys verification group, commented, "From semiconductors to OEMs, automotive companies are looking to accelerate the development, verification and test of increasingly complex and software rich automotive electronic systems." He added, "With the acquisition of QTronic, we are strengthening our position as the leader in virtual prototyping solutions and will continue to deliver powerful virtual development and test solutions that enable automotive companies to develop vehicle software earlier, faster, and better."

Automotive companies are increasingly deploying virtual development and test environments to enable software development to start earlier and accelerate continuous integration and test for over the air updates. This is needed to address the growth of vehicle software, combined with the complex interaction of hardware, software and physical components, which creates an enormous challenge for automobile manufacturers and their suppliers developing powertrain, electric vehicle, advanced driver assistance and autonomous driving systems.

In order to address this complexity, QTronic, which was established in 2006, virtualizes the development process by shifting software development steps from prototype vehicles, test rigs and hardware in the loop (HiL) to the PC of the developer. Its flagship product for this is Silver, which enables virtual ECUs to be built to closely mimic the behavior of their real counterparts. Hence it is a powerful experimentation environment for validating and testing the interaction of networked ECUs, engine, transmission and other vehicle components through simulation.

It allows simulation models of various tools (such as MATLAB / Simulink, Dymola, SimulationX, MapleSim, AMEsim, GT-Power, axisuite) to run on a Windows PC without having these tools installed in the execution environment. During distributed development, models are exchanged between developers in binary form without passing the corresponding source code, which helps protect a developer’s intellectual property.

QTronic’s other key product is Testweaver, an intelligent test automation solution that creates and runs system tests to detect errors.

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