Industry news 4 New vendor-neutral data platform for IO-Link devices The IO-Link community has added a new, central database for IO device descriptions that offers convenience for users and manufacturers. New design guidelines and a firmware update provide additional resources. Function of the vendor-neutral, central database of the IO-Link community for IO-Device descriptions. New IO-Link design guidelines and firmware update industrial ethernet book 4.2017 THE IO-LINK COMMUNITY has introduced a new, central database for IO device descriptions called IODDfinder. This service offers advantages both for manufacturers as well as for users of IO-Link technology. IO-Link manufacturers can use the advantage of the consistent and always current data pool. Resulting for users, on the other hand, is a central access point for all available IODDs, making the often cumbersome online search for IODDs from different manufacturers a thing of the past. The device description is a piece of software code that provides information on the functionality of an IO-Link device. Because this is not an executable program, the IODD is to be considered less as driver software and more as a template for the functions of an IO-Link device. The IODD is an important part of a device and must be accessible to the user. A central, vendor-neutral database for IODDs simplifies work for IO-Link users in day-to-day use of the technology. The new IODDfinder online service can be accessed either via the IO-Link website or directly at https://ioddfinder.io-link.com. Use of the IODDfinder is free of charge for users and members. There are already more than 3,500 IO-Link devices from 38 manufacturers listed in the data portal. Thus, the IODDfinder offers users a very good overview of the wide SOURCE: IO-LINK COMMUNITY range of available IO-Link devices – not only sensors and actuators, but also useful IO-Link accessories. It provides manufacturers of IO-Link devices with the possibility to provide not only the IODDs, but also additional and background information on their devices. A new Design Guideline from the IO-Link Community offers all interested users support during the planning of automation systems with IO-Link devices. In an action-oriented approach, the tasks required during planning are described step by step. Used as the basis for this design guideline is the IO-Link specification version 1.1.2. Beginning with a short description of the IO-Link technology and its place in the automation pyramid, the guideline details the advantages of IO-Link. An example system is then used to illustrate and find solutions for the subtasks of the electrotechnical planning. Chosen as the example for the planning was a conveyor system consisting of multiple conveyor belts. These conveyor belts are based on a uniform basic module. Different types of IO-Link devices are planned on the conveyor belts. In a first step of the electrotechnical planning, the technical properties of the IO-Link devices are explained. This includes properties such as IO-Link version, port class, power demand and size of the process data. In a subsequent step, the IO-Link master is selected on the basis of various aspects, such as higher-level bus system, protection class, port class and a number of other criteria. After the system structure has been established and the IO-Link devices and the IO-Link master defined, the wiring is planned in the next step. Of primary concern with the wiring is the connection between the IO-Link master and its IO-Link devices. Taken into account here are both the number of cable cores and the number of pins on the connectors, the currents and the voltage drop on the cable. Once all relevant points of the planning applicable to hardware have been completed, the results are documented in tabular form. IO-Link firmware update The intelligence and complexity of sensors and actuators is constantly increasing, not only within the scope of Industry 4.0. Today, even the smallest sensors have a powerful microcontroller and several thousand lines of software code. Firmware updates may occasionally be necessary, for example, to enable new functionalities or to add newly supported profiles that were not yet known when the device was developed. To meet these needs, the IO-Link community has specified a firmware update profile. At present, IO-Link is the only communication protocol that supports a uniform, vendor-neutral, firmware update mechanism. The firmware update profile is currently implemented by various manufacturers of IO-Link devices and uses the newly developed BLOB transfer (Binary Large Object) for the transfer of large quantities of data. In the future, it will thereby be possible to perform firmware updates quicker and easier. The manufacturer of the device provides a special file (*.iolfw) for the firmware update. In addition to the actual device software, this file also includes additional information, e.g., for verification purposes or even with information for the customer. With the IO-Link profile, tools for the parameterization of the master for the firmware update can also be developed. Industry news by IO-Link Community.
Industrial Ethernet Book 99
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