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Automotive Networking

This module is one of three linked modules related to automotive electrical and electronic systems: Automotive Networking, Automotive Diagnostics, and Automotive Test Techniques. Ideally these modules should be undertaken in this order.

These modules form part of the Jaguar Land Rover MSc course in Automotive Engineering.

Module Aims

The aims of this module are to:

  • Provide a comprehensive understanding of the concepts and principles of data networking.
  • Develop a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the key elements and principles of operation of the most commonly used automotive network technologies.
  • Provide a comprehensive understanding of all aspects of automotive network development including technology selection, network design and implementation, network diagnostics, advanced data analysis techniques for the comprehension and interpretation of network performance and behaviour.
  • Develop a theoretical and practical knowledge of systems of systems engineering principles and an understanding of how this impacts on the development, testing and diagnosis of complex and highly distributed automotive networked control systems.
  • Evaluate the requirements for future automotive network technologies required to support deployment of safety-critical systems and critically analyse the suitability of potential future network technologies.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module the student should be able to:

  • Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of the principles and theory of operation of any generalised data network and its relationship to the OSI 7-layer network model
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive theoretical and practical knowledge of the key elements and principles of operation of commonly used automotive networks including:
    • CAN
    • MOST
    • LIN
    • FlexRay
  • Critically analyse the suitability of different automotive networks and apply appropriate selection criteria when choosing a network technology for a particular application
  • Utilise advanced automotive network test equipment and data analysis techniques to monitor, analyse and interpret network performance and behaviour
  • Evaluate the impact of complex highly distributed network architectures on vehicle robustness and reliability and indentify suitable systems of systems engineering approaches for the development and validation of such automotive networks
  • Evaluate the requirements and critically analyse the suitability of new automotive network technologies to support advanced safety-critical systems deployment


  • Networking – basic concepts and networking principles
  • Current Automotive Networking Standards
    - CAN
    - LIN
    - MOST
    - Use of appropriate network analysers, test equipment and data analysis techniques
  • Network fault management and diagnostics
  • Network Design & Development
    - Automotive network development process and GPDS
    - Systems engineering of networked & distributed control systems
  • Future networking Standards
    - Safety critical systems and Drive-by-Wire applications
    - FlexRay
    - Wireless networking