Robotics and small autonomous and connected vehicles automated testing

It’s crucial to develop reliable systems that allow robots to be instrumental to users. Robots and small A/C vehicles require quality assurance testing to validate system functionality. Such testing provides confidence that a system will perform as expected. It also allows for a tester to understand the weaknesses, problems, and user constraints. Testing robotic systems differs from many other applications due to the complexity of hardware, software, and the fact that robots and small A/C vehicles have many degrees of motion. These robots are made of delicate moving components, dynamic effects, and multiple sensors. Unlike humans, robots can work in extreme and inhospitable environments and be exposed to extreme temperature, physical shocks, radiation, and hostile people.

Robots and small A/C vehicles need to be tested in as many different scenarios as possible since their workspace is vast and possibly infinite. Field robotics and small A/C vehicles face safety concerns. They can be large and move quickly, plus potentially be lethal to humans. Development of test services for robotics and small A/C vehicles focusing on automation, machine learning, and execution on simulation environments.

Robot Operating System – ROS

ROS is an open-source, meta-operating system that controls a robot and provides the services similar to an operating system, including hardware abstraction, low-level device control, implementation of commonly-used functionality, message-passing between processes, and package management.


Gazebo is a well-designed robot simulator that makes possible to rapidly test algorithms, design robots, perform regression testing, and train AI system using realistic scenarios. It can simulate populations of robots in complex indoor and outdoor environments.

Our robotics and small A/C vehicles testing solution

QAC has developed an exclusive automated scalable model-based test framework to design and execute robotics and small A/C vehicles testing. This cloud-based test automation framework is built using ROS and Gazebo technologies.

Automated Test Case Design

Using Model-Based testing, all test cases are generated automatically by the framework. With this approach, it’s possible to measure test case coverage. This model allows for easy updates and maintenance and even handles high variability of requirements to prioritize test cases.

Test Case Execution

In the Gazebo simulator, the generated test cases are automatically parsed to spawn the required models. Test termination (both success and failure) are identified automatically and the results are logged. Since test configurations are recorded, failure cases can be easily rerun and analyzed further.

Test Case Scenarios Coverage and Capabilities

It’s possible to set multiple goal points to test the path planner such as static and dynamic obstacles to check obstacle avoidance. Obstacles are placed on the robot’s path to ensure an encounter with the robot and test obstacle avoidance and detection. This type of test includes human-like obstacles with closed-loop human-like trajectories. The test also challenges the robot’s capabilities testing sensor disturbances due to external or internal interferences. This is done by modifying each sensor, simulating electromagnetic interference and the sensors’ field-of-view, cameras, 2D/3D lidars, and many environmental situations.

ISO 26262 for small road vehicles

QA Consultants has developed an automated process that can prioritize small road vehicles test cases according to ISO 26262 guidelines. This process represents high safety risks based on ASIL levels and focused test execution scenarios.

Cloud-Based Simulation Server

The generated test cases are automatically parsed to spawn the required models in the  Gazebo simulator. Test termination (both success and failure) are identified automatically and the results are logged. Since test configurations are recorded, failure cases can be easily rerun and analyzed further.

Our partners:

ACE: Automotive Centre of Excellence

Situated in Oshawa, Ontario, ACE is a world-class climactic tunnel facility. QAC has taken residence on the fifth floor and named that space the QAC Software Test Bay.

The QAC Software Test Bay tests:

  • Vehicle operating systems, connectivity and interfaces with ADAS ECUs instrumentation and infotainment clusters
  • Mobility Device Compatibility Testing
  • Model-Based Testing
  • Reusable lab for third-party validation of new infotainment options, and interoperability testing
  • Comprehensive coverage of the rapidly growing requirements for infotainment cluster testing


Fraunhofer FOKUS
FOKUS was founded in 1988 as a research establishment for Open Communication Systems and an institute of the former “Gesellschaft für Mathematik und Datenverarbeitung GmbH” (GMD, Society for Mathematics and Data Processing). Since the merger of GMD with Fraunhofer in July 2001, FOKUS has been an institute of the Fraunhofer Society. In 2012, the three ICT institutes FOKUS, FIRST and ISST Berlin were brought together under the name of Fraunhofer FOKUS. 

QA Consultants had the honour of hosting Professor Dr Holger Schlingloff, who is the Chief Scientist of the System Quality Center (SQC) at the Fraunhofer Institute FOKUS and professor for software engineering at the Humboldt University of Berlin.

Dr Schlingloff discussed Model-Based Testing over a three-day seminar.

Ontario Tech University

Ontario Tech University houses ACE in the North campus building. OTU has been an incredible partner for QA Consultants. “This partnership between Ontario Tech University and QAC brings together world leaders in automotive software technology from both academia and industry. In particular, the union combines state-of-the-art environmental testing and the ACE Climatic Wind Tunnel. Our researchers at Ontario Tech are delighted to be working alongside the experts at QAC. Specifically, the team will find new ways to develop, test and validate the advanced software and physical systems. Such systems are essential to the future of the automobile and to the success of auto manufacturers from around the world.” Don Toporowski P.Eng., ACE General Manager

National Research Council of Canada

In the on-going effort to maintain QA Consultants’ status as a leader in research and innovation, and with the continuing support of the National Research Council of Canada, QA Consultants founded, developed and built a large facility in Toronto devoted solely to testing. The Test Factory™ is a continuous quality test lab incorporating a precise combination of intelligence applied to advanced levels of automation.

Ontario Centres of Excellence

Raed Kadri, Director of Automotive Technology and Mobility Innovation of Ontario Centres of Excellence, sat down with Peter Watkins, COO of QA Consultants, to discuss the exciting future of testing connected vehicles in Ontario with ACE Climatic Wind Tunnel in the QA Consultants Software Test Lab.