As part of the European Union’s 6th Framework Programme for funding technology and scientific projects, a new embedded systems initiative called Speculative and Exploratory Design in Systems Engineering (SPEEDS) has been established. The initiative is a concerted effort to define a standard, end-to-end framework for the implementation of innovative, next generation concepts, methodologies, processes, technologies and tools for the design of embedded systems.

Its aim is also to provide an environment that will not only foster greater collaboration between European companies of all sizes involved in the embedded systems arena but also significantly widen access for smaller companies to leading edge tools and techniques. The initiative will enable the European embedded systems industry to seamlessly evolve from model-based design of hardware/software systems towards an integrated component-based construction of complete, virtual system models.

SPEEDS is intended to significantly improve Europe’s performance and competitiveness in embedded systems design in key, safety-critical industry sectors such as automotive, avionics, space and industrial control. Hence, the initiative is targeting a 60 percent reduction in development costs and 40 percent reduction in the development time of safety-critical embedded systems, whilst maintaining and improving the necessarily high quality standards demanded and managing the increasing design complexity involved.

The SPEEDS consortium is: Airbus Deutschland, Airbus France, Daimler Chrysler, Esterel Technologies, Extessy, I-Logix, Institut National de Récherche en Informatique et en Automatique, Israel Aircraft Industries, Knorr Bremse Fekrendszerek, Kuratorium OFFIS, Magna Powertrain, Parades Geie, Robert Bosch, Saab, TNI-Software and Université Joseph Fourier Grenoble.