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Ethernet modules are tailored to protocol before despatch

22 September, 2014

The Swedish industrial communications specialist HMS Industrial Networks has announced a system that allows equipment manufacturers to tailor their products to support specific industrial Ethernet protocols by installing the required protocol – Profinet, EtherCat, EtherNet/IP or Ethernet Powerlink – before delivering a product to the customer.

Leif Malmberg, HMS’ line manager for embedded products, says that the system will make life easier for manufacturers, because they will not have to stock a variety of pre-configured products dedicated to different industrial Ethernet networks. “Instead they can simply download the network protocol that corresponds to customer orders to our standardised Common Ethernet hardware.”

The Anybus CompactCom for Common Ethernet technology supports three different form factors – chips, “bricks” or modules – depending on the required level of integration to the host device. All are loaded in the same way.

The devices are based on HMS’ Anybus CompactCom 40 technology and are powered by its NP40 network processor, giving users access to the whole CompactCom family. “This means access to any fieldbus and industrial Ethernet network by simply plugging in another Anybus module,” Malmberg explains.

The Common Ethernet concept supports IT functions by default, allowing it to be used for Ethernet TCP/IP if the user wants to develop connections to a proprietary Ethernet network.

HMS' Ethernet system is available in three formats: chips, "bricks" and modules

The firmware for the required network is downloaded using HMS’ Firmware Manager software. Users can also download the firmware using FTP or the application interface.

The Anybus CompactCom 40-series is designed for high-performance industrial Ethernet applications and allows fast communication between a host device and the chosen network – 1,500 bytes of process data in each direction.

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