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`Open network controller` does it all

01 October, 2001

`Open network controller` does it all

A compact industrial computer the can simultaneously integrate industrial control systems, monitor plant information via the Web, and operate as an industrial controller, has been developed by Omron.

The "open network controller" (ONC) can act as a real-time data server for enterprise-wide applications and can serve as a communications gateway between shopfloor equipment (not necessarily made by Omron) and other information systems.

Omron claims that the ONC will cut dramatically the time and cost of establishing and maintaining communications. Connections between devices on DeviceNet, Ethernet or serial networks can be made without programming, regardless of the communication network being used. Similar support for ControlNet and Profibus is planned.

The Controller has an embedded Web server which allows monitoring, setting and maintenance to be performed remotely via a Web browser. By using a soft-logic package or plugging in a PLC board, the ONC can become an industrial controller. Another way of achieving the same end is to write an application in C/C++ to run on the built-in QNX real-time operating system.

Because this operating system requires few resources, there are no moving parts such as fans or disk drives to fail. A version of the controller can plug directly into the backplane of Omron`s CS1 range of PLCs.

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