Negotiating sharp turns on an ice circuit in Finland can be daunting for even a highly skilled driver. With most cars driven by conventional powertrains, wherein a single engine drives the wheels using analog mechanical components, the car would fail to handle the extreme weather conditions. Drako Motors’ advanced electric powertrain, DriveOS, morphed this herculean task into an exhilarating adventure. With DriveOS, the four wheels of the electric car were controlled independently, using one electric motor for each wheel that delivered unimpeded safety and performance. The four-wheel torque vectoring display of the DriveOS presented a clear view of acceleration and braking factor for each wheel, which made conquering turns an exciting, yet secure, undertaking.
DriveOS is a drive operating system which consolidates multiple hardware functions into a set of software applications running securely on single vehicle control unit (VCU). The single VCU combines four-wheel electronic torque vectoring, four-wheel regenerative braking, battery management, electronic stability control, traction control, an instrument display, and infotainment interface in one unit of the electric car. The DriveOS four-wheel electronic torque vectoring proactively controls each wheel of a vehicle and this advanced mechanism delivers ease of handling and safety.
“Users can dynamically shift torque between individual wheels at the millisecond level, reducing latency by an order of magnitude compared to traditional mechanical differentials,” states Dean Drako, CEO, Drako Motors. Additionally, the drivers can use any power distribution ratio, in contrast to mechanical differentials, which have a limited power distribution range for front-to-rear and left-to-right splits.
Through DriveOS, drivers can control each wheel separately in both directions that improves vehicle handling. Driving in hard terrains is simple as DriveOS continuously computes and optimizes the traction every few milliseconds on slippery surfaces, such as rain, snow, and ice. Differential torque simplifies manoeuvering the turns and eliminates safety issues that may arise due to understeering and oversteering. “With DriveOS, even driverless cars achieve optimum safety and control in all weather and road conditions.”
The state-of-the-art architecture of DriveOS facilitates integration of infotainment and autonomous driving while minimizing redundancy and integration overhead. Today’s new automobiles commonly have more than 100 million lines of code from disparate electronic control systems. DriveOS’s controller dramatically reduces lines of code as well as the hardware and software footprint. This approach simplifies implementation and testing, precise systems coordination, and higher functional safety and reliability. The developers can achieve compliance through the implementation of ISO standards; however, certification is easier to achieve due to the reduced number of components and smaller code size.
DriveOS might seem to be a monolith tool from a sci-fi fantasy, but it can be easily integrated with the other systems to achieve awe-inspiring efficiency and performance. Recently, 73 turns of Nürburgring Nordschleife, one of the most demanding German tracks in the world, witnessed an amazing feat. A demo vehicle cruised through them and set a lap record of 7 minutes and 49.04 seconds. DriveOS made the car glide smoothly through the circuit at record breaking speed.
Founded by experts in automotive, software, and security, Drako Motors enables original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to reduce cost and have full control of their products while easing the current integration and safety challenges of working with multiple hardware and software vendors. In tandem with today’s digital lifestyle wherein cars have become an integral part, Drako Motors leads the automotive innovation through greater precision in car handling.