CAN FD (CAN with Flexible Data-Rate) is an extension to the original CAN bus protocol specified in ISO 11898-1. Developed in 2011 and released in 2012 by Bosch, CAN FD was originally created as a response to the requests of automakers for more accurate, "real-time" data. Just as with classic CAN, this protocol is designed to record and transmit data, including errors, between devices and microcontrollers without the use of a central, "host" computer. CAN FD is primarily designed to meet the needs of automakers, however, the pervasiveness of classic CAN indicates the inclusion of this improved protocol across a variety of applications, including defense, industrial automation, autonomous devices, underwater vehicles and medical equipment.
CAN FD was created to accommodate increases in bandwidth requirements within automotive networks. The CAN FD protocol has brought the software closer to "real time" through the minimization of delays between an instruction and transfer of data (latency) and higher bandwidth. CAN FD also allows for more storage capacity in the CAN-frame. While classic CAN has the capacity to hold 8 bytes of data within the CAN-frame, CAN FD can hold up to sixty-four. This is accomplished through a decrease in relative overhead and improvements to software simplicity and efficiency when transmitting large data objects. CAN FD also has decreased the number of undetected errors through increases in the performance of the CRC-algorithm. In addition, CAN FD is compatible with existing CAN 2.0 networks, allowing the new protocol to function on the same network as classic CAN and CAN FD has been estimated to transmit data up to 30 times faster than classic CAN.
CAN FD is predicted to be in most vehicles by 2019/2020.
Some of the companies behind the new standard include Infineon, NXP, Daimler and GM.