A new MORE publication has just been published titled “An exploratory study of software engineering in heavy-duty mobile machine automation” in Robotics and Autonomous Systems. The article is fully open access and can be read online: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921889023000635?via%3Dihub#d1e2742
As the amount and complexity of software for automating heavy-duty mobile machinery is increasing, software engineering in this domain is becoming more important. To characterize the industry’s current state of software engineering and its issues to guide future research, we performed an empirical exploratory study. We interviewed 16 software engineering professionals from 13 different companies conducting business in heavy-duty mobile machines and their automation. The interviews were analyzed qualitatively, and quantification of the analysis results is presented. We first create an overview of software engineering in the heavy-duty mobile machinery industry. We then identify problem areas affecting software development and discuss some of the possible solutions found in literature. Our findings indicate that the major problem areas faced in the industry that require more research are its digital transformation, autonomous machine functional safety, low availability of workforce for developing software for robotic mobile machines and the lack of established software standards.