For about 20 years, the CAN (Controller Area Network) protocol has been the dominating bus system for automobiles. Whether addressing efficient digital motor control or the regulation of functions such as lighting, climate control, power windows, navigation systems, indicators, tire pressure monitoring, anti-lock braking systems or electronic stability control, the low-cost CAN enables the flawless and reliable communication between different control, sensor and multimedia units. The maximum possible data throughput via the CAN 2.OB standard is increasingly insufficient for complex electronic control devices. Introduced in 2012 and approved by ISO, the CAN-FD expansion provides substantial improvement. Shortening bit times in the data phase and enlarging the data field to 64 bytes have since enabled significantly greater data transmission rates in order that control devices requiring broader bandwidths can be cross-linked.
Beyond the CAN FD expansion, the Fraunhofer IPMS IP Core commands additional functions which support the host processor in the management of the IP Core communication. Dr. Frank Deicke, Business Unit Manager at Fraunhofer IPMS explains, »The transmit buffer of our IP Core can be operated in first-in-first-out or priority mode. Here, messages of higher priority are automatically sent out first.« He continues, »In addition, our core supports time-triggered CAN (TTCAN) according to ISO 11898-4. With that, it is possible to set timeframes for sending messages at defined time points and mark received messages with a time-stamp. Communications network designers can then therefore ensure that data from individual control units is available in real time«.
Although primarily used in the automotive industry, CAN 2.OB and CAN FD protocols are by no means limited to this sector. Possible fields of application are found everywhere where the number of electronic control devices is increasing: in monitoring systems of automation technology as well as in medical analysis equipment and aircraft cabin and flight-guidance systems, railway vehicles or elevators. The Fraunhofer IPMS CAN FD IP Core has already been incorporated into numerous ASIC- and FPGA designs and used in the field. It is delivered either as netlist or via VHDL or Verilog source code and can be flexibly implemented into individual control devices or circuits (system-on-chip, FPGA) through its 32-bit controller interface (8 bits and 16 bits, as well as AMBA APB and AHB optional), fully synchronous description and modern clock domain crossing.
Experts from the Fraunhofer IPMS will be on hand in Nuremberg at the 2016 Embedded World, the world's leading exhibition for embedded technologies, providing information about the institute's services from 23.-25. February. Fraunhofer IPMS can be found at Booth 583 in Hall 4. Participants of the accompanying Embedded World Conference are cordially invited to attend the »Migration from CAN to CAN FD – How to Boost Network Performance« presentation to learn more about the steps of the integration of the CAN FD protocols. The presentation is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. on Thursday, 25. February.