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Hitachi America, Ltd.Hitachi America, Ltd.

Hitachi America, Ltd., Research & Development


With the recent advancement of sensing and computational technologies, currently, research and development activities on advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) have gained significant momentum. HAL–R&D/APL is actively involved on ADAS research works with the aim to develop innovative technologies for advanced safety systems to save lives and reduce the number of traffic accidents. We have been working in close collaboration with Hitachi Automotive Systems, Ltd. which is one of the pioneers among the global ADAS suppliers.

Stereo Camera and ADAS Control Unit

Hitachi stereo camera system is widely known as a standalone sensing unit to realize adaptive cruise control (ACC). HAL–R&D/APL research activities on ADAS focus mainly on the development of technologies to realize enhanced functionality of stereo camera system. An example of HAL–R&D/APL ADAS research works can be include automatic traffic sign recognition (TSR) system to provide improved safety for drivers. In this system, camera recognize the speed limit in real-time without the information of GPS and provide the speed limit information to driver. In addition to the TSR system, current ADAS research efforts dedicated to the development of vehicle inside and outside recognition technologies and consecutively integrate technologies into systems for providing better comfort and safety to driver and passengers.


Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) is becoming more important in power converters and motor drives as seen in hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) to achieve higher reliability of the vehicle and its components. Electromagnetic interference (EMI) of the electronic components for a vehicle are evaluated and validated at a component-level test bench; however, it is sometimes observed that the EMI level of the components can be changed in a vehicle-level test due to differences in the vehicle’s configuration (cable routing, connecting location etc.). At APL, researchers focus on the measurement and simulation technique development for both component and vehicle level to improve the current product development process.

Proposal of product development process utilizing EMC simulation

EMC-Cart: measurement setup of a simplified electric vehicle


Mechanical Systems and Design
Engine Management Systems (EMS)

APL is developed advanced technologies for Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) fuel systems and Engine Management Systems (EMS) to meet US (CAFE) and Euro (Euro6) fuel economy and emissions regulations for gasoline powertrains. In particular, we are working on following areas:

  • Combustion research: Focusing on innovative fuel injection technology, spray analysis and combustion simulation tools used to optimize the spray and combustion chamber geometry for improved engine performance in terms of fuel consumption, noise and emissions
  • Engine controls and calibration: Engine management plays a key role in electric controls of engine and fuel pump system. APL is developing advanced combustion control techniques, algorithms and calibrations using Model Based Design methods.
  • Advanced Combustion: Development of engine fuel system controls, especially with respect to the management of advanced combustion concepts (HCCI, GDI).

Overview of EMS sub-system solutions

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Combustion simulation and Spray Analysis

Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH)

  • Robust and reliable design of the high pressure fuel delivery system such as direct injection pump, injector and common rail.
  • Developing new designs to minimize the compression sound for the direct injection engine system and the air suspension systems.
  • NVH optimization of electrical components such as drive motors, inverters, electric brake and power steering.
  • Multi-physics design of products by way of advanced multi-domain simulation technology.
  • APL is involved not only at the component level but also system (vehicle) level NVH reduction through implementation of advanced transfer path analysis technology.

Hitachi SIDI System
(HP Pump, Pipe, Common Rails and Injectors)

Vehicle Sound Test
<With our Fuel Delivery System Installed>


Materials and Processing

Automotive components usually experience complex deformation history during service in harsh environment. To better design a component with improved service life, materials development and processing technology innovation are critical. Advanced material deformation simulation can shorten the development time and accelerate the implementation of new materials. Our research activities focus on deformation simulation of materials using a combination of computational tools and fundamental theories of material deformation. A crystal plasticity finite element method (CPFEM) is developed and implemented to interpret and predict localized material deformation behavior during application.

Figure 1. Advanced material deformation simulation under various loading conditions.

Cutting-edge processing technology such as high-speed precision machining, laser welding and friction stir welding leads to high-quality, high-performance automotive components with reduced production time. Research on cutting tool innovation and machining process design also expands the use of advanced simulation tools from lab bench to mass production. Novel laser welding technology enables fast production of various automotive components with great accuracy and reliability. Innovative solid-state welding technique, the friction stir welding, promotes the increasing use of advanced high-strength and lightweight materials in transportation industries for achieving fuel economy and reducing emissions.

Figure 2. Friction stir welded lightweight housing for an electronic circuit [U.S. Patent 7,508,682].


Model Based Design for Automotive Embedded Systems

Model Based Design (MBD) and co-simulation is one of the core technologies of APL. Our primary focus has been to support the Hitachi Automotive Systems business unit in the US (HiAMS-AM) by providing strong local collaboration for product support in the area of Engine Management Systems (EMS) and Electric Vehicles/Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (EV/PHEV) components and systems. In order to do that we have been adopting several traditional and advanced technologies including rapid prototyping, Hardware In the Loop Simulation (HILS), high fidelity component and system modeling, control system design, numerical analysis and classification analysis. This includes the use of several 1-Dimentional mechatronic simulation software tools. Our support also covers compliance for functional safety standard (ISO26262) based on the requirements of our strategic US automotive OEM customers.

Apart from the methodologies described above, our current advanced research activities include the development of a virtual multi-domain simulation platform incorporating multiple heterogeneous simulators for virtual prototyping, virtual hardware in the loop simulations (vHILS) and cyber physical systems (CPS) development. This system will be available for use over the internet and/or cloud to our customers. Our vast experience in co-simulation technology has been incorporated to implement a multi-domain/multi-physics MBD environment emulating realistic complete system simulations. This platform supports models with different levels of abstraction and fidelity to allow performance oriented and accuracy oriented simulation and analysis based on the user requirements. It will also support virtual system and component level fault injection necessary for functional safety compliance testing. This leads to a robust design methodology that can be applied for a wide range of Hitachi products including but not limited to automotive systems. Our goal is to enhance simulation flexibility, improve resource utilization by distributing multi-physics simulations across multiple simulators, and adapt community computing approach for system design. It will be a model plug-n-play platform with dynamic sharing of models through the internet. Moreover, users need not have expertise in all the domains of the modeled system. In order to develop the infrastructure needed to support this platform, we have developed an in-house cloud solution. We have a working prototype of this platform which we plan to scale to a substantial level working by working with several Hitachi Group Companies. We will also be working internally to implement efficient data analytics on the simulation data.

Integration of simulation capabilities across different research laboratories/business divisions within Hitachi will help reduce the cost and time to market for developing new products making Hitachi a very competitive Tier1 supplier and solutions provider. At research level, we have an ongoing project with a US automotive OEM (customer) where we are adapting this technology to enhance our strategic relationship. We are also actively working on collaborative research projects with the local universities.

Gasoline Fuel Pump Cyber Physical System (IFAC 2010 publication)

APL Cloud solution


  • An Application of the Particle Velocity Transfer Path Analysis
    Akira Inoue, Yosuke Tanabe and Masanori Watanabe
    SAE International Journal of Alternative Powertrains, 2013-01-1999.
  • Development of Particle Velocity Transfer Path Analysis
    Akira Inoue and Yosuke Tanabe
    Proceeding of Internoise 2012 & ASME NCAD meeting, 2012, IN12_1018.
  • Controlling the Direction of Sound Intensity Based on Sound Intensity Transfer Path Analysis
    Yosuke Tanabe and Akira Inoue, Proceeding of AES 48th International Conference, 2012.
  • Application of Sound Intensity Transfer Path Analysis to a Booming Sound in Vehicle Interior
    Yosuke Tanabe and Akira Inoue , Proceeding of Internoise 2013.
  • A Review of Power Flow Formulation as Dissipated Power in Vibratory Systems
    Akira Inoue and Yosuke Tanabe, proceeding of 20th International Congress on Sound & Vibration, 2013.
  • Acoustic sound source identification in a Gasoline DI pump for high pressure fuel flows
    Prashanth Avireddi and Nikhil Seera, SME 2014 4th Joint US-European Fluids Engineering Division Meeting, FEDSM2014-21633.
  • Effect of process parameters on mechanical properties of friction stir spot welded magnesium to aluminum alloys
    H.M. Rao, W. Yuan, H. Badarinarayan, Materials & Design, 66 (2015) 235-245.
  • Friction stir welding of dissimilar alloys and materials
    N. Kumar, R.S. Mishra, W. Yuan, A Volume in the Friction Stir Welding and Processing Book Series, Elsevier 2015.
  • Integrated computational model for surface strain characterization in stainless steels and the experimental validation
    L. Zheng, W. Yuan, H. Badarinarayan to be submitted to ICME proceeding 2015.
  • Friction stir welding of dissimilar lightweight metals with addition of adhesive
    W. Yuan, K. Shah, B. Ghaffari, H. Badarinarayan, TMS2015, Friction stir welding and processing VIII (2015).
  • Microstructure, texture, and mechanical properties of friction stir spot welded rare-earth containing ZEK100 magnesium alloy sheets
    R.I. Rodriguez, J.B. Jordon, H.M. Rao, H. Badarinarayan, W. Yuan, H. El Kadiri, P.G.      Allison, Materials Science and Engineering: A, 618 (2014) 637-644.
  • Friction stir spot welding of rare-earth containing ZEK100 magnesium alloy sheets
    H.M. Rao, R.I. Rodriguez, J.B. Jordon, M.E. Barkey, Y.B. Guo, H. Badarinarayan, W. Yuan. Materials & Design, 56 (2014) 750-754.
  • Friction stir welding of dissimilar aluminum and magnesium alloys for automotive sub-structure
    W. Yuan, H. Badarinarayan, H.M. Rao. 10th International Symposium on Friction Stir Welding, Beijing, China, May 2014.
  • Crystal plasticity and grain-orientation-dependent hkl-lattice strain in polycrystalline SUS316
    L. Zheng, W. Yuan, H. Badarinarayan. TMS2014 Supplemental Proceedings, pp. 171-180.
  • Influence of structural integrity on fatigue behavior of friction stir spot welded AZ31 Mg alloy
    H.M. Rao, J.B. Jordon, M.E. Barkey, Y.B. Guo, X. Su, H. Badarinarayan. Materials Science and Engineering: A, 564 (2013) 369-380.
  • Deformation behavior of friction stir processed magnesium alloys
    Q. Yang, S. Mironov, Y.S. Sato, K. Okamoto. Magnesium Technology, 2011.
  • Monotonic and fatigue behavior of Mg alloy friction stir spot welds: An international benchmark test in the "magnesium front end research and development" project
    H. Badarinarayan, S.B. Behravesh, S.D. Bhole, D.L. Chen, J. Grantham, M.F. Horstemeyer, H. Jahed, J.B. Jordon, S. Lambert, H.A. Patel, X. Su, Y. Yang. Magnesium Technology, 2011.
  • Effect of weld orientation on static strength and failure mode of friction stir stitch welds in lap-shear specimens of aluminum 6022-T4 sheets
    H. Badarinarayan, Q. Yang, K. Okamoto. Fatigue & Fracture of Engineering Materials & Structures, 34 (2011) 908-920.
  • Effect of tool geometry and process condition on the strength of a magnesium friction stir lap linear weld
    Q. Yang, X. Li, K. Chen, Y.J. Shi. TMS2011.
  • Effect of tool geometry and process condition on static strength of a magnesium friction stir lap linear weld
    Q. Yang, X. Li, K. Chen, Y.J. Shi. Materials Science and Engineering: A, 528 (2011) 2463-2478.
  • Analysis of effect of tool geometry on plastic flow during friction stir spot welding using particle method
    S. Hirasawa, H. Badarinarayan, K. Okamoto, T. Tomimura, T. Kawanami. Journal of Materials Processing Technology, 210 (2010) 1455-1463.
  • Material flow during friction stir spot welding
    Q. Yang, S. Mironov, Y.S. Sato, K. Okamoto. Materials Science and Engineering: A, 527 (2010) 4389-4398.
  • Fatigue evaluation of friction stir spot welds in magnesium sheets
    J.B. Jordon, M.F. Horstemeyer, J. Grantham, H. Badarinarayan. Magnesium Technology, 2010.
  • Effect of interfacial microstructure on lap shear strength of friction stir spot weld of aluminium alloy to magnesium alloy
    Y. S. Sato, A. Shiota, H. Kokawa, K. Okamoto, Q. Yang, C. Kim. Science and Technology of Welding and Joining, 15 (2010) 319-324.
  • Specific character of material flow in near-surface layer during friction stir processing of AZ31 magnesium alloy
    S. Mironov, Q. Yang, H. Takahashi, I. Takahashi, K. Okamoto, Y.S. Sato, H. Kokawa. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions A, 41 (2010) 1016-1024.
  • Cyber Physical System: A Virtual CPU Based Mechatronic Simulation.
    IFAC 2010


  • US Patent no. 9,562,504 : Fuel pump for an internal combustion engine
    Inventor Name: Yosuke Tanabe, Jason Abbas, George Saikalis
  • US Patent no. 9,593,655: Fuel delivery system
    Inventor Name: Donald J. McCune, Harsha Badarinarayan, Pilar Hernandez Mesa, George Saikalis
  • US Patent no.9,618,480: Contact Impedance Measurement Method and Apparatus
    Inventor Name: Isao Hoda, Hua Zeng, Masayoshi Takahashi, Hiroki Funato
  • US Patent no. (Pending): Method and apparatus for controlling a solenoid actuated inlet valve
    Inventor Name: Yosuke Tanabe, Donald J. McCune
    Inventor Name: Heming Chen, Donald J. McCune, Sujit Phatak, Yuan Xiao
    Inventor Name: Yuan Xiao, Donald J. McCune, Can Wang, Heming Chen, Sujit Phatak, Yasuhiro Ito
  • US Patent no. 9,285,411: Method and System for Identifying an Electrical Noise Propagation Path
    Inventors: Y. Tsuchie, H. Zeng, M. Takahashi, H. Funato
  • US Patent no. 8,823,389: Method for identifying EMI sources in an electrical system
    Inventors: M. Takahashi and H. Zeng. Sept. 2, 2014
  • US Patent no. 8,698,571: Circuit for improving the immunity performance of a vehicle network
    Inventors: M. Takahashi and H. Zeng. April 15, 2014
  • US Patent no. 8,049,369: Power inverter controller and method
    Inventors: H. Funato, L. Shao, K. Maki, and G. Saikalis. Nov. 1, 2011
  • US Patent no.7,911,806: Method and apparatus for reducing EMI emissions from a power inverter
    Inventors: H. Funato, L. Shao, and M. Torigoe. Mar 22, 2011
  • US Patent no. 8,678,779: Fuel pump
    Inventors: Takashi Yoshizawa, Donald J. McCune, Harsha Badarinarayan and Akira Inoue
  • US Patent no. 8,038,178: High pressure fuel pipe construction for an internal combustion engine
    Inventors: Harsha Badarinarayan, Akira Inoue, Takashi Yoshizawa, Atsushi Hohkita, Hiroaki  Saeki, Hiroshi Ono, Masahiro Soma, William Harvey, Steve Miller and Su-Wei Sung
  • US Patent no. 8,555,858: High pressure fuel pipe construction for an internal combustion engine
    Inventors: Harsha Badarinarayan, Akira Inoue, Takashi Yoshizawa, Atsushi Hohkita, Hiroaki Saeki, Hiroshi Ono, Masahiro Soma, William Harvey, Steve Miller and Su-Wei Sung
  • US Patent no. 8,594,952: Method for measuring mechanical power dissipation in a vibratory system
    Inventor: Akira Inoue
  • US Patent no. 8,789,513: Fuel delivery system
    Inventors: Donald J. McCune, Harsha Badarinarayan, Pilar Hernandez Mesa and George Saikalis
  • US Patent no. 7,980,226: Fuel system for a direct injection engine
    Inventors: Frank Hunt, Harsha Badarinarayan and Takashi Yoshizawa
  • US Patent no. 7,552,720: Fuel pump control for a direct injection internal combustion engine 
    Inventor: Jonathan Borg, Harsha Badarinarayan, Donald J. McCune, Atsushi Watanabe, Takuya Shiraishi and George Saikalis 
  • US Patent no. 7,406,946: Method and apparatus for attenuating fuel pump noise in a direct injection internal combustion chamber 
    Inventor: Atsushi Watanabe, Harsha Badarinarayan, Jonathan Borg, Donald J. McCune, Takuya Shiraishi, Atsushi Hohkita, Masahiro Soma and Hiroaki Saeki 
  • US Patent no. 6,918,383: Fuel control system 
    Inventors: Frank Warren Hunt, Ayumu Miyajima, George Saikalis, Jonathan Borg and Shigeru Oho
  • US Patent no. 5,595,163: Apparatus and method for controlling the fuel supply of a gas-fueled engine 
    Inventors: Toshiharu Nogi, Robert I. Bruetsch and George Saikalis
  • US Patent no. 5,353,765: Fuel management system for a gaseous fuel internal combustion engine 
    Inventors: George Saikalis and Masatoshi Sugiura
  • US Patent no.7,866,531: Multi-sheet structures and method for manufacturing same
    Inventors: Qi Yang, Harsha Badarinarayan, Frank Hunt, Kazutaka Okamoto
  • US Patent no.7,848,837: Method and apparatus for monitoring the quality of a machining operation
    Inventors: Harsha Badarinarayan, Frank Hunt, Kazutaka Okamoto
  • US Patent no. 7,555,359 : Apparatus and method for correcting defects by friction stir processing
    Inventors: Harsha Badarinarayan, Frank Hunt, Kazutaka Okamoto
  • US Patent no.7,508,682: Housing for an electronic circuit
    Inventors: Harsha Badarinarayan, Kazutaka Okamoto, Frank Hunt
  • US Patent no. 7,197,743:  Method for generating computer software for embedded systems
  • US Patent no. 7,778,806: Method and apparatus for simulating microcomputer-based systems
  • US Patent no. 8,700,379: Method and apparatus for simulating microcomputer-based systems
  • US Patent no. 7,987,075: Apparatus and method to develop multi-core microcomputer-based systems
  • US Patent no. 8,639,409: System for managing electrical power distribution between infrastructure and electric vehicles