Close-the-GAP! Industrial Ethernet in process automation

Wednesday, 19. May 2021

In process automation, industrial Ethernet can close the gap to the production plant and safely bridge long distances. The standardization activities around IEEE802.3cg have laid the foundations for this.MESCO will be giving a presentation at the Safety & Security 2021 Forum to show how an ATEX-compliant design for explosive atmospheres can be developed with Ethernet APL.

Industrial Ethernet makes its way into process automation

The upheaval in process automation begins the moment Industrial Ethernet finds its way into the production plant. With the standardization activities around IEEE802.3cg, the first Ethernet phys for SPE (Single Pair Ethernet) are now available. However, there is another challenge. The additional explosive atmospheres that occur require an ATEX-compliant design.

Extremely low energy budgets are necessary to achieve intrinsic safety. With lowest energy consumption not only a standard compliant communication via Ethernet-APL and PoDL can be established, but also an IEC61508-SIL2 compliant and ATEX intrinsically safe sensor as an example. Here, PROFINET is used via a black channel to route naked PROFIsafe packets to a safety CPU, which in turn is monitored by its own test facility.

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You can find out more about this in the Safety & Security 2021 online forum. In a technical presentation, Gerhard Weiß, R&D Manger at MESCO in Freiburg, explains the mechanisms for implementing safety functions over the long distances in production plants and how an ATEX-compliant design can be set up.

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