Development of a LabVIEW‐based realtime data acquisition system for the testing of vehicle propulsion systems

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Because of the constantly rising fuel prices and increasing emission standards, hybrid vehicle technology is becoming a rapid growing field. Like many car manufacturers, the ETEC department at the VUB performs research in this field.
One of their tasks is to characterize the internal power flows between different electrical systems in a hybrid vehicle that ensure efficient propulsion. This information is then used for cross correlation with simulation models to refine and optimize the latter. These characterizations require a reliable, high speed, real?time data acquisition system that can function as an intuitive to use, stand?alone device.
National Instruments offers a broad range of data acquisition platforms (FPGA, embedded PC), a series of industrial I/O modules and the LabVIEW software development environment. One of them is the CompactRIO 9014 platform, a rugged programmable automated controller based on an FPGA and a microcontroller that runs the Wind River VxWorks real?time operating system.
This master thesis investigates how such a CompactRIO device, together with I/O modules for 24 analog voltage
inputs (±10V, 16bit, 100kS/s), CAN bus and GPS can be programmed in LabVIEW and can be deployed as a standalone data acquisition device. Because the CompactRIO only has a limited internal flash memory of 2 GB and a 400MHz processor, there has been opted for a second measurement strategy. Using a network cable, the
CompactRIO can be connected over TCP/IP to a host computer, which will serve as a bigger data storage device. An additional advantage is that higher data acquisition rates can be achieved.
Date of Award2011
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorJoeri Van Mierlo (Promotor), Mohamed El Baghdadi (Jury) & Thierry Coosemans (Jury)


  • Real-time data-acquisition
  • Electric vehicles
  • Hybrid electric vehicles
  • Vehicle testing
  • G programming

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