Simple in concept, the original test consoles developed by Martech for FPE’s Foxhound vehicle allowed the electrical systems on the ‘pod’ or vehicle cab to be tested in isolation prior to being integrated with the chassis.
Plugging directly into the cab electrical interface, the test console mimics the chassis electrics such that when a button is pressed in the cab, e.g. headlights, the corresponding LED on the console illuminates. Similarly when a switch is toggled on the console to simulate a sensor such as oil pressure warning, the relevant light on the dash board illuminates.
Needing to undertake more extensive testing of not only the cab, but wiring for the more complex vehicle electronics, the consoles have grown in capability to encompass simulators for ABS braking, steering systems and CANbus based hardware.