Automated Driving Reference Architecture


SAE J3131 defines an automated driving reference architecture that contains functional modules supporting future application interfaces for Levels 3 through 5 (J3016). The architecture will model scenario-driven functional and nonfunctional requirements, automated driving applications, functional decomposition of an automated driving system, and relevant functional domains (i.e., functional groupings). Domains include, but are not limited to, automated driving (i.e., automation replacing the human driver), by-wire and active safety, and those related to automated recovery from faults and system failures (e.g., system bringing the vehicle to a safe state). The architecture will address Tier 1 and Tier 2 functional groupings. The document will include one example instantiation being divides the functionality into two functionality groupings, and will detail the functional and information interface between the groups. A reference SysML model of architecture and edge cases will address system fallback to minimal risk state on freeways.


The goal of the document is to develop a shared framework and language for addressing the basic system functions and functional interfaces in the form of a reference architecture for an automated driving system to support the SAE on-road automated vehicle levels. While some architectures may eventually support software component level interoperability, the deliverable for this task force (i.e., recommended practice) will describe of how requirements will be achieved through a model-based representation of reusable patterns of activity, functionality, information/data flows, and scenarios of sequenced responses to time events. Describing the application interfaces will promote the interoperability of automated driving systems/subsystems from different suppliers, minimizing the integration effort, and helping to ensure the extensibility and flexibility of these systems for future applications. It should also help minimize redesign and recertification of safety critical aspects of these systems while allowing manufacturers to focus on differentiating their products on customer features.

  • SAE J 3131
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