Search Unity

Emulate sensors and mechatronics systems with Unity SystemGraph

Automotive simulation of a car driving built with Unity SystemGraph
Automotive simulation of a car driving built with Unity SystemGraph

Unity SystemGraph is a new graph-based authoring tool that represents systems through its components, such as lidar sensors and cameras, in Unity. Now robotics and engineering teams can more easily prototype systems, test and analyze their behavior, and make optimal design decisions without access to the actual hardware.

To better support the groundbreaking efforts of our customers in automotive, manufacturing and other industries using Unity for simulation, we’re introducing a new product, Unity SystemGraph, to improve systems development and simulation workflows.

One of the biggest opportunities to improve those areas is bringing a familiar experience and workflows to represent electromechanical systems. We assembled an entire mechatronics team and found that the best way to build that bridge was to bring the way systems are represented in engineering diagrams into Unity. Customers indicated their most immediate need was to accurately emulate sensors such as lidars and cameras, which aligns with our ongoing robotics simulation and computer vision efforts at Unity.

Introducing Unity SystemGraph

This content is hosted by a third party provider that does not allow video views without acceptance of Targeting Cookies. Please set your cookie preferences for Targeting Cookies to yes if you wish to view videos from these providers.

Unity SystemGraph is an intuitive, new graph-based authoring tool that represents systems through its components. It seeks to provide direct modeling of real-world systems, with direct mapping between real and virtual components. It allows easy binding to game objects, adding the ability to connect the newfound systems’ functionality emulation to the formidable set of visualization and interaction tools provided in Unity.

Unity SystemGraph also includes SensorSDK, a library to easily create accurate, performant emulations of lidars and cameras, with a ready-to-use set of examples that considerably speed up development. It consists of sets of nodes with well-defined interfaces that make it easy to assemble them based on your needs. SensorSDK leverages the power of real-time ray tracing to get fast, accurate physical representation of sensors. It provides multi-spectrum materials to support realistic interaction of non-visible light found in lasers with the environment. It also includes additional non-DXR (Direct X Raytracing) based sensor physics to provide the full extension of Unity’s multi-platform capabilities.

Unlocking better workflows

Unity SystemGraph unlocks the ability to represent multiple levels of system components, such as a system of systems, multiple subsystems and so on. It eliminates the need to write complex scripts to control and coordinate the many different logical components existing in electronic systems when modeling them in Unity.

It is capable of emulating execution of systems components at very high frequencies with little to no code. It also provides intuitive debugging with the ability to visualize inter-components communication, control execution and more.

While many of our advanced customers have implemented sensor models in Unity, the leveraging of DXR provides the following benefits:

  • Emulation of real-world characteristics such as beam divergence
  • Parameterizable beam distribution without having to interpolate or sample more
  • Sampling the scene using DXR is faster than using a camera-based approach, especially with several sensors since the same acceleration structure can be reused
  • Run multiple (10+) high-fidelity sensors in the same scene on a standard gaming PC

Out-of-the-box support from partners

Ready-to-use sensors, validated with the help of our partners Ouster and Velodyne, provides quick ramp-up for customers to incorporate sensors into their Unity projects.

Initial tests with each of these leading lidar solution providers have yielded emulations in Unity that are almost functionally indistinguishable to real-world output from lidar data.

This content is hosted by a third party provider that does not allow video views without acceptance of Targeting Cookies. Please set your cookie preferences for Targeting Cookies to yes if you wish to view videos from these providers.

Ouster Studio software displaying emulated sensor data
Ouster Studio software displaying emulated sensor data

To learn more, check out this blog guest authored by Velodyne and this interview with Ouster.

Unity SystemGraph in action

Check out the benefits early customers of Unity SystemGraph are experiencing:

Volvo Cars: Autonomous driving testing

As a beta customer, Volvo Cars used Unity SystemGraph to perform high-fidelity sensor modeling for their autonomous driving perception software testing.

“At Volvo Cars, we have been using cutting-edge technologies from Unity in many areas of our work. “Unity SystemGraph is a flexible and convenient development tool that fits well into our simulation work and boosts our software testing."

– Joachim de Verdier, Head of Safe Vehicle Automation, Volvo Cars

Amentum: Security and safety

This content is hosted by a third party provider that does not allow video views without acceptance of Targeting Cookies. Please set your cookie preferences for Targeting Cookies to yes if you wish to view videos from these providers.

Amentum, a global technical and engineering services company, worked with Unity to use Unity SystemGraph in a demonstration project. With the goal to improve security in manufacturing facilities, the project uses simulation and sensor fusion to determine the optimal location to place camera and lidar sensors to detect threats moving throughout a warehouse. Learn more in this article.

Get it now

Unity SystemGraph and SensorSDK are now available as part of Unity Industrial Collection. Try it free for 30 days or buy it online now, or contact a Unity sales representative to learn more.