31 May 2001
Category: Automotive Diagnostics
Pico Technology has generated a library of waveforms to aid in automotive electrical/electronic diagnostics
Cambridge, UK — 31 May 2001 — PC-based instrumentation specialists Pico Technology has made freely available a library of automotive waveforms, including those for starter current, injection units, crank sensors and primary and secondary ignitions. Organised alphabetically by signal type (ABS, Air Flow, Alternator and so on,) the library includes manufacturer/model specific waveforms captured from a wide range of commercial and specialist vehicles.
Both 'good' and 'bad' waveforms are present within the library to aid vehicle diagnostics, and all can be viewed at www.picoauto.com . In addition, users of Pico Technology PC-based oscilloscopes will receive the waveforms on CD ROM.
Alan Tong, Pico Technology's Technical Director comments: “The library is proving extremely popular in the automotive test industry and is growing on an almost daily basis. Automotive test technicians, manufacturers and motoring organisation, using the ADC-212, are all invited to record additional waveforms and we will add them to the library.”
Contributions can be made by emailing data files with brief descriptions of the signal type, vehicle manufacturer/model and test conditions.
At present the library contains more than 100 comprehensive waveforms, all captured using Pico's popular, low-cost, 12-bit ADC-212 PC-based oscilloscope. However, Pico;s long-term goal is for the library to contain all the necessary waveforms to allow technicians, be they in the workshop or providing roadside assistance, to fault find the majority of private, commercial and specialist vehicles.
“With access to the library, anyone using our PC-based oscilloscopes for vehicle fault finding will be able to compare like for like,” continues Tong. “With the imminent introduction of dual-voltage vehicle systems and the increasing number of functions switching from hydraulic to electric (for example Power Assisted Steering), vehicle electrics and electronics are becoming increasingly complex. We believe the test and measurement equipment used for vehicle diagnostics must keep pace with the automotive industry.”
Pico's PC-based oscilloscopes differ from most automotive oscilloscopes in that they offer a high resolution for both the horizontal (32,000 points) and the vertical (4000 points) axes. This enables complex waveforms to be captured and makes it possible to 'zoom in' on areas of interest. It also offers unlimited storage and the printing of waveforms, setups and tests.
Tong concludes: “Combining the power and versatility of PC-based oscilloscopes and creating an open-source library of waveforms that vehicle and parts manufactures, technicians, and road-side recovery organisations can add to is going to transform automotive diagnostics.”