Tutorial: IEC 61499 device model

Models, such as those offered in IEC 61499, can be used to represent parts of a measurement and control device, including hardware that runs software to execute a control loop, according to a white paper from ISaGraf.


Models, such as those offered in IEC 61499, can be used to represent parts of a measurement and control device, including hardware that runs software to execute a control loop, according to a white paper from ISaGraf. The controller, with a processor and memory devices, may also contain a communication interface when used in a distributed application. Such controllers can be seen in intelligent actuators (for control valves) and in sensors (such as flowmeters). Each device may integrate one or more resources, considered to be a functional unit contained in a device.

Functions of a resource are to accept inputs from the process interface (input/output driver) or the communication interface (shared memory, communication network), process the data, and return outputs to these interfaces. An automation and process control application runs in a resource or splits the load across multiple resources to use special features of each. Distributed applications may run resources within one device or across multiple devices.

Click here to read an ISaGraf PDF of the tech note, including diagram.

Edited by Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering editor in chief,

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