Test & Measurement


LabVIEW-enabled measurement and calibration support now for next-generation ECUs

23 August 2006 Test & Measurement

National Instruments' ECU Measurement and Calibration Toolkit 2.0 extends the company's LabVIEW, LabWindows/CVI and Microsoft Visual C/C++ development environments to support measurement and calibration applications for designing and validating automotive electronic control units (ECUs). With this latest upgrade, NI says automotive engineers now can use the toolkit to develop and verify next-generation ECUs with the Universal Measurement and Calibration Protocol (XCP).

The ECU Measurement and Calibration Toolkit 2.0 delivers high-level, easy-to-use functions based on industry-standard XCP and CAN Calibration Protocol (CCP), which engineers can use to build their own customised measurement and calibration applications. Other measurement and calibration tools on the market use expensive turnkey applications that offer limited customisation. Using Toolkit 2.0 with the NI LabVIEW graphical development environment, engineers can create highly specified ECU measurement and calibration applications, replicate their test systems and integrate the new applications into existing ECU test applications for a fraction of the cost, according to the company.

Engineers previously accessed the data in ECUs only through CCP. Building on the functionality of CCP, the Association for Standardization of Automation and Measuring Systems (ASAM) defined XCP, a new protocol specification for use in next-generation ECUs. The ECU Measurement and Calibration Toolkit 2.0 delivers XCP master functionality on CAN and Ethernet, giving engineers access to the newest and most advanced ECUs to acquire measurement data or adjust parameters inside the ECUs.

The previous version of the toolkit integrated ASAM-defined (*.A2L) database files so engineers could read and write to ECU memory using the channel names defined in the database files. The latest upgrade expands this functionality with new properties for measurement and characteristics that supply more in-depth access to the ECU information stored in the imported *.A2L files. Engineers now can read both the channel name and the comments contained in the *.A2L database files in the channel selection dialogue and choose specific channels faster and more efficiently.

In addition, the ECU Measurement and Calibration Toolkit 2.0 includes the XCP-Spy utility, an application that monitors, records and displays XCP communication commands and parameters. Engineers can use the XCP-Spy utility to analyse the application's XCP communication and verify accurate communication from the ECU master to the slave.

The ECU Measurement and Calibration Toolkit 2.0 works with all NI CAN Series 2 interfaces on PXI, PCI and PCMCIA and provides support for the LabVIEW Real-Time Module for applications that require deterministic communication.

For more information contact NI South Africa, 0800 203 199.





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