Dual-homing Ethernet switch for device redundancy

As the importance of security and uptime becomes more prominent across industry, the need for effective redundancy strategies in industrial applications has increased. "Older industrial connectivity options, such as serial lines, did not support redundancy," said Frank Madren, GarrettCom's president.

11/01/2005


As the importance of security and uptime becomes more prominent across industry, the need for effective redundancy strategies in industrial applications has increased. "Older industrial connectivity options, such as serial lines, did not support redundancy," said Frank Madren, GarrettCom's president. "As a result, the typical redundant solutions have been expensive and rare. Today the sophistication, scope, and security requirements of industrial applications have increased. Ethernet is much more accommodating to redundant topologies, and the timing is right for us to introduce plug-and-play dual-homing technology for cost-effective redundant connections wherever required in industrial applications," he said

Engineers can now economically connect any device to GarrettCom Inc.'s new Magnum ESD42 Dual-Homing Switch to provide dual-network-access (dual-homing) capability at the edge of any industrial network—providing high-availability for critical monitoring and control devices.

Typical applications include: surveillance cameras, substation power relays, badge readers, production scanners, and mission-critical SCADA devices in manufacturing lines—where unplanned interruptions can cost upwards of $1 million per minute. ESD42 switches, priced as low as $230, dedicate two peer ports to provide two network access points to protect against any single point of failure for those devices located at the edge of an industrial network. Detection of a media connection fault or an upstream switch failure simply causes the ESD42 to transfer upstream network activity to the other port, usually within 300 milliseconds. Additionally, the switches have three levels of hardening, from regular (office) to hardened (factory floor) and premium (outdoor). Hardened products use high-grade components and patent-pending thermal techniques. Passive cooling techniques (no fans) allow the switch to resist dust, dirt, moisture, smoke, and other contaminants. Premium products use premium-grade extended temperature components and the same thermal techniques and mounting options as hardened products.

Greg Wells, product development manager, Nuclear Security Services Corp (NSSC), Willowbrook, IL, said, "We use the ESD42 switch to provide two points of access for remote badge readers in a nuclear power facility. The readers are sited at all entry points and in many cases are not accessible to the central network ring. Dual-homing gave us the added level of redundancy and increased access security we needed."

Power supply options for any of the models include ac or dc with 12V, 24V, or 48Vdc terminal blocks, as well as dual-source 24Vdc models. Internal power sense monitoring with an alarm contact is available for switches that will be installed in hostile environments.





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