The automotive software industry has always been synonymous for old compilers, out-dated toolchains and resource constraint hardware. “Only use something which has been proven in-use” most safety engineers would argue. In the past, in a distributed E/E-Architecture, this argument would apply because of a low number of independently functioning electronic control units (ECUs). However, this became insufficient as vehicles started to get converted from a complex system architecture with simple software to a simple system architecture with complex software. At this point, working with outdated software and software development practices can become a safety risk.
Eclipse iceoryx was started at the end of 2019. Since then, the project is providing an answer to the question: How can you combine the momentum and the freedom of open-source development while not compromising on quality and safety? In the workflow we also incorporated tools and methodologies from a successful certification of Apex.OS which is a safety certified version of the open source project ROS 2.
The talk will give an overview over the typical automotive software development process and discuss the modifications in the development workflow that were created for Eclipse iceoryx. It will address hands-on questions like: What does the safety context mean for maintainers and contributors? How can one use Eclipse iceoryx in a safety-critical systems? What are the advantages over a closed-source solution?
Furthermore, the key architectural design decisions and examples of how code can be made safer will be shared. The talk will conclude with a brief insight into the project's future work.