Keysight - Oscilloscope Measurement Tools to Help Debug Automotive Serial Buses Faster

Our thanks to Agilent for allowing us to reprint the following article.


The primary reason engineers use oscilloscopes to debug and characterize automotive serial buses, such as CAN, LIN, and FlexRay, is because of an oscilloscope's inherent ability to characterize the analog quality of these signals. Performing analog characterization using an oscilloscope is often referred to as "physical layer" measurements. Serial bus protocol analyzers are optimized at performing measurements at the "application layer". Instruments such as these are focused on providing trace flow of data at a higher abstraction level - but at the cost of providing little or no physical layer measurement capability. A scope is not a replacement for a serial bus protocol analyzer, but neither is a serial bus protocol analyzer a replacement for a scope. Engineers working on automotive serial bus applications typically have both.

Although there are many oscilloscopes on the market today from multiple vendors that offer automotivefocused options, Agilent's InfiniiVision Series oscilloscopes offer some unique measurement capabilities (only available in Agilent scopes) for debugging and characterizing the physical layer of automotive serial buses including:

  • Fastest oscilloscope waveform update rates
  • Only oscilloscopes with hardware-based decoding for CAN, LIN, and FlexRay
  • Only oscilloscopes with CAN and FlexRay eyediagram mask testing
  • Only oscilloscopes with a dual-bus time-interleaved protocol lister
  • Only oscilloscopes with a real-time frame counter with bus utilization
  • Only oscilloscopes with segmented memory acquisition with frame decoding in a lister display
  • Only battery-operated oscilloscopes with automotive options
  • Only oscilloscopes with FlexRay physical layer conformance test software and with complete test reporting
  • Lowest price oscilloscopes with CAN, LIN, and FlexRay options...

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