Communication, networking needs of temperature controllers rise

Natick, MA—Users of microprocessor-based single-loop industrial temperature controllers expect to need more communication bus and network capabilities in these products, a recent Venture Development Corp. study shows.


Natick, MA —Users of microprocessor-based single-loop industrial temperature controllers expect to need more communication bus and network capabilities in these products, a recent Venture Development Corp . study shows. VDC based its analysis on telephone interviews and a detailed email questionnaire.

The survey asked users about current and future requirements for these products. Results found that in 2005, they expected 51.5% of the devices they purchased would have connectivity. By 2010, that figure is expected to rise to 65.9%. Having bus/network connectivity is becoming very important as applications become more complex linking more processes together, said the report.

Communication bus and network interface capabilities can be provided in controllers to allow communication with the controller from a remote location, the report explained. Use of networking, it went on, may include digital input of sensor signals; remote programming; and transmittal of control parameter settings for monitoring, diagnostic and alarm information, digital control signals, and temperature measurement data for monitoring and other purposes.

When asked about the types of digital communication interfaces they purchased in 2005 and which they expect to use in five years, users chose Ethernet most frequently. More than 40% said they used Ethernet in 2005; that number is expected to rise to 64% by 2010. "Ethernet is inexpensive, mature, highly reliable, and a proven system," said the report. "However, the findings encompass all Ethernet protocols, and there are many. The data are not encouraging that a limited set of Ethernet protocols will gain favor."

Click here for more details on this survey from VDC Corp.

—Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jeanine Katzel, senior editor,

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