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Health checkups are essential for a healthy life, and the same principle applies to vehicles. Vehicle components can malfunction or produce errors, and these issues are identified using vehicle diagnostic tools. Vehicle diagnostics are equally applicable to both gasoline and electric vehicles.

The significance of vehicle diagnostics lies in its ability to prevent and address issues before they escalate into major problems. Timely detection of faults allows for prompt repairs or maintenance, ensuring that the vehicle operates at its best and minimizing the risk of unexpected breakdowns.

Understanding Traditional Vehicle Diagnostics Processes

Imagine a scenario where you notice that the “Check Engine” light on your Sedan’s dashboard has illuminated. Concerned about the potential issue, you decide to take your car to an automotive repair shop for a diagnostic check.

Upon arrival, the technician first connects a handheld OBD-II scanner to your car’s OBD-II port.

With the OBD-II scanner linked to the vehicle, the technician now initiates a diagnostic scan. The scanner communicates with the car’s Engine Control Module (ECM) and retrieves a set of diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs). These codes provide the technician specific information about the issues detected by various sensors and components in the vehicle. The interpretation of the codes helps the technician identify the nature of the problem post which he/she will attempt to clear the diagnostic trouble codes.

How does an OBD-II work and what are its limitations?

On-Board Diagnostics II (OBD-II) is a monitoring system that examines the performance of a vehicle’s engine and other essential systems. OBD-II is an evolution of the original OBD system, and it became mandatory for all cars and light trucks sold in the United States since 1996. It was later widely adopted in other regions, making it a global standard.

Every vehicle equipped with OBD-II has a standardized diagnostic port that allows external devices, such as OBD-II scanners or code readers, to connect to the vehicle’s onboard computer systems-II continuously monitors various components and systems within the vehicle, such as the engine, transmission, exhaust, and emissions control systems. When an irregularity or fault is detected, the system generates Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) that correspond to specific issues. Technicians can use OBD-II scanners to clear DTCs after addressing issues.

Limitations of OBD-II

OBD-II primarily focuses on electronic systems and sensors, and it does not provide detailed insights into mechanical components and may not always capture the root of the issue. For instance, it can indicate a fault with an oxygen sensor but may not specify if the issue is caused by a wiring problem, or another underlying issue.

And since OBD-II standards define a set of parameters and DTCs, and not all vehicle manufacturers use the same codes for the same issues it can lead to generic codes that require further interpretation.

While OBD-II is effective for basic diagnostics and emission-related issues, more advanced problems related to in-vehicle software, etc require additional tools and methods, such as oscilloscopes or specialized diagnostic equipment like OTA. OBD-II systems have limited access to advanced diagnostic information, as some manufacturers restrict access to proprietary data.

Why is Vehicle diagnostics getting more complicated in the New Era?

It’s simple, to diagnose a vehicle issue you need to know what went wrong with the vehicle and at what time and for this you require data from the vehicle. However, collecting data from various parts of the vehicle is a challenging and time-consuming task. Let’s understand why efficient vehicle data gathering is challenging.

Six Reasons Vehicle Data Gathering Has Become More Complicated.

  1. Rising vehicle complexity — The average car now has over 100 million lines of code, which is more than a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. This complexity makes it more difficult for technicians to understand how all the systems interact and how a problem in one system can affect another.
  2. Advancements in Vehicle Technology — Modern vehicles are equipped with sophisticated electronic systems and advanced technologies like complex engine management systems, anti-lock braking systems (ABS), traction control systems, etc. The integration of these advanced systems requires more intricate diagnostic procedures.
  3. Multiplexing and CAN Bus Networks — Many modern vehicles use multiplexing and Controller Area Network (CAN) bus systems to facilitate communication between different electronic control units (ECUs). These networks allow for more efficient data exchange but also introduce complexity in diagnosing issues since problems in one part of the system can affect others.
  4. Increased Number of Sensors — Modern vehicles are equipped with a higher number of sensors that monitor various parameters, such as engine performance, emissions, and safety features. These sensors provide detailed data to onboard computers, but the increased complexity in sensor networks requires more advanced diagnostic tools to interpret the information accurately.
  5. Integration of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles — These vehicles have high-voltage components, battery management systems, and electric propulsion systems, which demand specialized diagnostic tools and expertise.
  6. Software-Driven Systems — Many vehicle functions are controlled by software, making software-related issues a common source of problems. Diagnosing and resolving software glitches require specialized tools capable of accessing and analyzing the vehicle’s software.

How is eSync Simplifying Vehicle diagnostics with Smart Data Gathering

eSync bi-directional software and data pipeline bridges the gap caused by diverse electronic systems, operating systems, and communication protocols in vehicles. Designed to work with various devices and manufacturers, eSync ensures seamless compatibility, acting as a unified platform for effective data gathering and updates across the automotive landscape.

The collection and analysis of vehicle data pose challenges due to diverse data formats, network protocols and sensor systems, causing complexity for automotive OEMs. Recognizing this issue, eSync's Data Gathering Umbrella alleviates the burden by introducing a unified architecture. This innovative solution accommodates various protocols, data formats, and scripts, providing a standardized and adaptable framework for streamlined data collection process. Consequently, it empowers OEMs to focus their efforts on leveraging data to improve both vehicle performance and the overall customer experience.

eSync streamlines vehicle issue diagnosis and resolution by enabling remote debugging or remote diagnostics. Through direct deployment of ISO 13209 — OTX (Open Test Sequence Exchange format) based scripts to ECUs, technicians can perform specific debugging / tasks remotely. This minimizes the need for physical intervention and reduces vehicle downtime. The system recommends standardized OTX-based scripts for monitoring and diagnostics, offering adaptability by supporting deployment in popular programming languages of OEM’s choice.

Vehicles equipped with advanced sensors, cameras, and LiDAR generate large amounts of real-time streaming data. Handling and processing this data efficiently pose challenges. eSync supports protocols like AVB-TSN for handling video data and emphasizes the importance of 5G and Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) for efficient streaming data from vehicles. This forward-looking approach ensures that eSync is equipped to handle the increasing volumes of streaming data generated by modern vehicles.

In summary, eSync is not just another tech player; it’s the driving force revolutionizing how the automotive industry tackles vehicle data gathering challenges. From diverse ecosystem compatibility to efficient data gathering, secure over-the-air updates, and streamlined remote debugging, eSync makes vehicle diagnostics a hassle-free experience for OEMs and automotive manufacturers.

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