Measuring, stimulating and calibrating ECUs with data throughput of up to 5 MByte/s

August 31, 2011 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Vector is introducing compact hardware for high-performance measurement and calibration tasks with the VX1060. Developers and calibration engineers can use it to measure and calibrate internal ECU system variables at a maximum sampling rate of 80 kHz. Data is accessed over microcontroller-specific data trace and debug interfaces for greater data throughput of up to 5 MByte/s with little effect on ECU performance.

Measurement data throughput depends on the microcontroller used. On the Renesas V850, Freescale MPC5xxx or Infineon XC2000, data throughput is 1 MByte/s, while on the Infineon TriCore-PD it is 3 MByte/s, and 5 MByte/s is possible with the TriCore-ED. Signals are acquired time-synchronously, even in very fast tasks with cycle times less than 50 microseconds, and they are provided with precise time stamps. With the TriCore-ED it is even possible to achieve cycle times less than 15 microseconds.

The device is connected to the ECU's microcontroller using a compact adapter (23x24 mm). Because of its small dimensions, this POD (Plug-On Device) enables simple and flexible mounting on the ECU. Together with the cable and the waterproof plug connections, the hardware is designed for the high temperatures of automotive applications. The measurement system is well suited for use in the vehicle interior and engine compartment, on test benches and in the laboratory. The VX1060 base module processes the measurement and stimulation data and interfaces to a measurement and calibration tool such as CANape via the standardized XCP on Ethernet protocol.

The ability to directly access the microcontroller permits quick flash programming even without the flash bootloader, e.g. flashing of “brain dead” ECUs.

Only minor changes to the ECU code are necessary to acquire measurement data. Measurement effects on ECU execution times are minimal; with the TriCore-ED it is even possible to measure without affecting execution time.

For more information on the Internet: