The project FRONTICS aims at researching and developing methods to fully support model-driven development of software applications for distributed realtime automations systems. The key innovation is the development of an overall workflow including the modelling of communication relationsships. Using this communication model it is possible to autonomously configure communication parameters of all participating devices within heterogenous networks.

Automation systems typically consist of large number of different sensors and actuators to perform control and measurement tasks. Therefore a domain expert has to deal with a large amount of different technologies which complicates the design and engineering phase as well as the ramp-up and operation of these systems. Consequently the necessary development cycles must be kept short in time. In order to significantly reduce the development cycles in automation, control, and measurement (ACM) applications a sophisticated, holistic design and engineering approach will be used. 

Project period: 2008-2010
Project status: finished

FRONTICS radical innovations are:

  • Automatic derivation of communication configuration from a system/application and interconnection model.
    Automatic configuration (timing, priorities, schedule and protocol) of heterogeneous hybrid real-time networks will be supported by automatic derivation of communication relations from system and application models and descriptions.
  • System/application-centred engineering instead of device or network centred engineering
    System/application-centred engineering of automation applications will allow most flexible and latest possible mapping of application and communication code to embedded devices.
  • Heterogeneous communication infrastructure
    FRONTICS architecture will support wired and wireless, event-based and time-triggered communication architectures as well as their application-dependent coexistence.