NI, European sensor vendors adopt smart analog sensors; support IEEE P1451.4

Nuremburg, Germany—National Instruments (NI, Austin, TX) reported May 13 that European sensor vendors are joining NI's Plug & Play Sensors Program, a collaborative effort by NI and many sensor vendors to gain widespread adoption of IEEE P1451.4.


Nuremburg, Germany— National Instruments (NI, Austin, TX) reported May 13 that European sensor vendors are joining NI's Plug & Play Sensors Program. Launched in North America in 2002, this program is a collaborative effort by NI and sensor vendors to gain widespread adoption of IEEE P1451.4, a proposed standard for analog sensors. IEEE 1451.4 would reportedly make integrating 'smart' sensors into measurement systems as easy as connecting a mouse to a computer.

Several European sensor vendors already have joined NI's Plug & Play program to integrate new sensor technology, and support the IEEE P1451.4 standard, which recently went to ballot, and will be voted on by IEEE's applicable subcommittee and members. NI's group aims to improve system configuration and diagnostics, reduce downtime and improve sensor data management for its customers. The seven initial European vendors include:

  • Bruel & Kjaer (Denmark);

  • G.R.A.S. Sound & Vibration (Denmark);

  • Kistler (Switzerland);

  • LEM Components (Switzerland);

  • RDP Electronics (U.K.);

  • Sensorex (France); and

  • WayCon Positionsmesstechnik (Germany).

'The IEEE P1451.4 standard makes it possible for us to deliver on a long- time customer demand for automatic configuration of analog sensors for measurement and automation systems,' says Loic Moreau, LEM Components' process automation manager. 'Embedded, standardized TEDS information on these 'smart' sensors greatly reduces setup and maintenance time, while increasing general system integrity and reliability for our customers.'

The contemplated standard proposes that sensors add an embedded, low-cost memory chip containing a standardized transducer electronic data sheet (TEDS) that stores important sensor information and scaling parameters for self-identification and self-description. TEDS eliminates the need to manually input this data when configuring a measurement system.

As part of its Plug & Play program, NI and the sensor vendors are working together to expand plug-and-play capabilities to legacy sensors. Through a proposed online database of TEDS data from sensor vendors at , users soon will be able to download TEDS binary files or Virtual TEDS to their systems to instantly give plug-and-play capabilities to their traditional sensors without a memory chip. With Virtual TEDS, engineers also will be able to take advantage of this new sensor technology with their traditional measurement hardware, providing a smooth transition to the next generation of measurement and automation systems. In addition, engineers can implement basic TEDS management functions into their NI LabView applications using the TEDS library for LabView, which is now available for download at .

'As the official vote for IEEE P1451.4 nears, leading sensor vendors worldwide are recognizing the need to join together to adopt and build on this standard,' says David Potter, NI's DAQ platform manager and vice chairman of IEEE's P1451.4 committee. 'Through the Plug & Play program, we are ensuring that developers and systems integrators have a standard for integrating 'intelligent' sensor technology into systems that can use both next-generation sensors and legacy sensors.'

Other members of the Plug & Play program include Celesco, Endevco, Lebow, Lion Precision, Macro Sensors, Measurement Specialties, PCB Piezotronics, Honeywell Sensotec, Transducer Techniques, Watlow, Weed Instrument and Wilcoxon.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor

No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Intelligent, efficient PLC programming: Cost-saving programming languages are available now; Automation system upgrades; Help from the cloud; Improving flow control; System integration tips
Smarter machines require smarter systems; Fixing PID, part 3; Process safety; Hardware and software integration; Legalities: Integrated lean project delivery
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
PLCs, robots, and the quest for a single controller; how OEE is key to automation solutions.
This article collection contains several articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again