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The Controller Area Network was originally developed by the Robert Bosch Corporation as a robust, low-speed messaging protocol for automotive use. The CAN protocol is now maintained by the ISO standards organization.

The CAN protocol specifies only a physical and link layer. A variety of higher-level protocols, such as DeviceNet, CANopen, J1939, and untold proprietary messaging protocols successfully run over CAN.

The CAN physical layer uses a balanced, differential transmission scheme for twisted-pair media. CAN data rates are specified as low as 10 Kbit/second, up to a maximum of 1 Mbit/second. The CAN physical layer does not use any other physical layer specifications, so CAN-specific transceiver and controller chips are available from a variety of semiconductor manufacturers.

The CAN network layer defines a robust bus protocol, providing error detection. Every device on the bus may signal corrupted reception, which invalidates the message to all devices on the bus. The CAN telegrams contain a maximum of 8 data bytes, so the rejection of a single message does not seriously limit throughput.

Since CAN is an enabling technology, there are no certification, interoperability, or conformance requirements to use CAN with a proprietary messaging scheme. However, standard high level protocols which are defined for use on CAN may have such conformance and testing requirements.

What Can AB Tech Solution Do for Your CAN Product Development?
  • Develop a product for you with a CAN-based standard or proprietary protocol.
  • Add CAN capability to your existing product
  • Enhance the features and functionality of your product