Early in his career, New Eagle’s co-founder, Rich Swortzel, was an engineer for Delphi. Like many engineering departments, Rich and his colleagues would prototype controls in MATLAB / Simulink (the de facto engineering software for controls), which was designed to serve as a simulation engine.
First, the plant is modeled in the software. Then, the control algorithm is developed. Next, testing and tuning takes place in simulation, via parameters. Notably, all simulation has a measure of approximation, no matter how good the simulation engine. Lastly, testing continues until it works correctly.
Recounts Swortzel: “Other companies make hardware that allows engineers to take the graphic program model, hit “Go!” and then run it within the rugged PC in the vehicle. The throttle, inputs, and outputs are all physically connected to the real world, allowing the engineers to run the algorithm on the vehicle.”
Finally, he sees another issue related to the design management: “To make this work, engineers have to convert this beautiful control algorithm into a specification document and ‘throw it over the fence’ to an embedded hardware and software team, who would then have to build it from scratch. This is a large reason why design cycles for vehicles can be as long as seven long years!”
For New Eagle, the whole goal is to move a customer into a scalable volume production, quickly. It does so, in part, by leveraging Kvaser’s products.
New Eagle has three internal business units: Creator – Integrator – Supplier.
First, Product Engineering (Creator) builds the Raptor tools, Raptor-enabled ECUs and displays.
Second, Application Engineering (Integrator) is available to assist customers with development if they don’t have the capacity, or build a turn-key solution for customers who want that, or simply provide training on the tools to those customers who want to build it themselves.
Lastly, New Eagle’s distribution arm (Supplier) is a reseller for a variety of products, including Kvaser’s products, as well as many ECUs, motors, and inverters. New Eagle’s relationships with major volume producers can help to unlock many products related to vehicle development.
Kvaser fits carefully into all of New Eagle’s business units, making Kvaser invaluable to the company’s ongoing business operations.