Instrument examines CAN bus load

March 06, 2014 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
The PCAN-Diag from PEAK-System Technik GmbH is a handheld device for the diagnostics of CAN busses on OSI layers 1 and 2. With the new firmware 1.7, the device obtains new features. It now displays the busload associated to the transmission of error frames. This is done in a split view parallel to the busload caused by regular CAN frames. If the oscilloscope function identifies the sampled signal course as a CAN frame, the report function shows detailed characteristics of that frame, enabling users to draw conclusions about the CAN network.

Two display modes are now available for multiplexer variables: Either all variables of a multiplexer are shown together or they are displayed separately for each multiplexer state. A software is available for download from PEAK-System's website. It contains the new firmware 1.7.0, device help, Windows tools for the PCAN-Diag, and documentation.

The PCAN-Diag displays data traffic from a connected CAN bus in a basic manner in hexadecimal format as well as in symbolic form. It also transmits CAN messages for maintenance purposes. For a later review of the data stream, there's a trace function for recording. At faulty communication, the diagnostics can be refined with busload measurements or, on hardware layer, with termination and voltage measurements. A more accurate picture of the waveform on the CAN lines is obtained with the dual-channel oscilloscope function.

For more information visit