TMA Newsletter - April, 2017
Alternator & Starter Testing Equipment
TMA team keeps you updated with a regular newsletter and informs you about all news around alternators, starters and TMA testing equipment. It is a way to stay in touch and share with you the latest evolution of the world market... Enjoy your reading !
Franck, INTITEK-TMA Electronic Engineer, explains the fundamental principal of LIN protocol in the last generation alternator regulators.
With the increase of embedded systems in vehicles, it has become imperative to use a network enabling them to communicate with the on-board computer.
In the case of the last generations of alternators, the regulators use LIN protocol whose communication is bidirectional. That means that the on-board computer talks to the alternator which answers to it.
This is for example the case of ONYX and TITANE test benches which totally simulate the on-board computer functionalities. They are able to drive the Lin alternator, get a feedback of its information, and report all details on a ticket.
Connection ONYX / Lin Alternator
But, what is LIN Protocol?
The Lin protocol (Local Interconnect Network) is a serial system bus used mainly in automotive industry meeting the standard ISO-17987. This is a reliable and economical communication protocol allowing vehicle’s on-board computer to converse with its subsystems.
There are 2 main LIN families: LIN1 and LIN2. They are essentially differentiated by the way their messages are encoded. Those two families can generally run under two transfer speeds: 9600 or 19200 bauds.
Inside LIN protocol, we find five types (1, 2, 3, 4 and 5) each having five different versions (a, b, c, d and e). Those variants allow to systems to identify, send a feedback of issues and information or to be drove.
A communication using LIN protocol is composed of a sequence of frames representing a specific message, for example, the identification of the alternator or its diagnostic.
Example of dialogue with 2 frames :
|Identification frame||Diagnostic frame|
|Examples: regulator Id, alternator brand…||Examples: breakdown, measurement…|
Each frame contains information or parameters coming from the alternator or vehicle calculator. Below, examples of a diagnostic frame:
Example of a diagnostic frame for a regulator with Lin 1 Type 1 version b frame
|1st byte||2nd byte||3rd byte||4th byte|
A : Overheat
B : Electrical failure
C : Mechanical failure
D : Excitation signal
E : Excitation current
F : LIN latency
G : LIN error
H : Load ramp
I : Excitation control
J : Information on 4th byte
K : Voltage regulation or speed or …
During a communication with an alternator, the car computer can :
|Ask some information||Get breakdwon||Set parameters|
|o Brand and model of the alternator
o Brand and model of the regulator
o Rotation speed
o Excitation current
|o Voltage regulation
o Response time
o Default mode (LIN breakdown)
INTITEK TMA and the network of automotive recycling yard D2Alliance (brand CARECO) have signed in March a distribution agreement of the test bench for alternators and starters ONYX 2.0. This partnership will allow D2Alliance members to use the machine in order to guarantee the quality of their alternators and starters, giving proves of test to the customer
This partnership fits into the context of the “law on the re-use parts”, which impose (from January 2017) to automotive professionals to replace the damaged parts by second-hand ones instead of new ones.
INTITEK TMA is well-known as a leading manufacturer of testing equipment with its products ONYX and TITANE. “We are happy to work with D2Aliiance” can confirm Guillaume ROSSI, Europe Sales Manager at TMA. “Our agreement with this network of automotive recycling yard will allow us to initiate an interesting development on this sector”.
“INTITEK TMA is a valued partner and this business partnership reflects our will to collaborate with companies which share of vision of the automotive aftermarket”, explained Arthur HALGRAIN, Operational Director of D2Allaince.
Several sales have already been closed since 1st March 2017 !
Designed from 2012, ONYX and TITANE have been the 2 flagships products of TMA and its parent group INTITEK. Considered as leader of automated testing machine for alternators and starters, these machines use the latest technologies.
In 2017, as a result of massive R&D investments and partnerships with main actors of the market, the engineering team of INTITEK-TMA has launched a new version of its product range ONYX and TITANE : the version 2.0.
Those developments concerns amongst others :
- A new multiplexed electronic card for no limit connexion solution
- New industrial grade connexion cables
- A new built-in innovative solution allowing the test of alternators with external regulators
- A software enriched with a lot of new functions (search by plug, configuration of the test, results storage, personalization of test results, help for interpretation of results...)
- The possibility of remote control for maintenance with internet connexion
- An upgradeable hardware conception to adapt to evolution of the market
These new machines are subject to regular software updates which bring new operating modes and parameters.
For the third time, TMA will be exhibiting REMATEC Show in Amsterdam with its international team. 2017 will be the year of novelties and innovation for TMA, with some surprises reserved to visitors in the stand 08.260 (TMA).
One of the main reasons of this success is the organizational structure adopted by TMA and its parent company INTITEK Group.
Indeed, TMA has been integrated in INTITEK Group since 2011, and gained large advantages :
- A powerful structure of over 700 engineers and technicians
- A solid financial base and the sustainability of a large group
- An Efficient R&D center, « Inti-novation », allowing a regular evolution of products.
A Product development team is composed of INTITEK mechanical, electronical, electrical and computing engineers working together on the same projects. These projects are led and directed by a project manager gathering market needs from the sales team. Regarding the updates on existing products, TMA had fixed a minimum target of once a quarter. Another dedicated technical team of 2 engineers takes care of after sales support.
Concerning the sales network, INTITEK-TMA has separated the organization into the main geographical areas of the global market : Americas (North and South), Europe/Africa and Asia/middle East/Oceania. Offices in Toronto and Shanghai complete the headquarter and the factory located in France. This geographical organization allows TMA to offer premium proximity support to all its clients.
Finally, the production is fully assured by TMA factory in Lyon, (east of France). With its 35 years of experience in the Industry, TMA manufactures every month series of ONYX and TITANE, and handle the logistic support in order to optimize lead time and costs. Main of the time, clients can be delivered within a week due to the stock of ONYX and TITANE in the premises.
This organization has proven its effectiveness until now, and INTITEK-TMA will continue in the future to invest and provide the best services and products to all its clients.