Profibus lobbying against IEC 1158

Following the approval of IEC 1158 earlier this year, Profibus International (PI) claimed May 12 that most of the new fieldbus standard is obsolete and that it should be suspended and replaced by an alternative approach. PI added that it believes IEC 1158 (now properly called 61158) offers limited functionality, is unproven, unsupported, and unworkable.

07/01/1998


Following the approval of IEC 1158 earlier this year, Profibus International (PI) claimed May 12 that most of the new fieldbus standard is obsolete and that it should be suspended and replaced by an alternative approach. PI added that it believes IEC 1158 (now properly called 61158) offers limited functionality, is unproven, unsupported, and unworkable. Balloting on IEC 1158 is expected in September, and observers say PI is lobbying IEC's 40 national committees to vote against the proposed standard. PI reportedly only needs to get 10 votes against IEC 1158 for it to be rejected. Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and probably Belgium are already on PI's side. "IEC 1158 only covers process control and completely ignores industrial automation," says Geoff Hodgkinson, PI's PR director. "To introduce an international standard with limited scope at this late stage makes no sense when all applications domains are well served by proven and standardized technologies—especially as this new one will only ever exist on paper." PI has stated that fieldbus standardization should be replaced by an effort to standardize interfaces. It adds that it supports IEC 1158-2, which includes the Physical Layer for the process industries, but says the Data Link Layer and Application Layer are deficient and could form an unsafe standard. For more information and a copy of Profibus' release on IEC 1158, visit www.profibus.com .





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