AS-interface gateways provide seamless communication with standard, safety networks
Pepperl+Fuchs ENX Series AS-Interface Gateways support both Modbus/TCP and EtherNet/IP protocols for seamless communication with standard and safety networks in one gateway. They also include a number of advanced features for enhanced network performance and diagnostics retrieval.
“These gateways provide more than just an easy transition from Ethernet to AS-Interface. Where in the past two separate gateways were required to connect to Modbus/TCP and EtherNet/IP, with ENX the entire AS-Interface network is controlled by a single, very powerful, AS-Interface gateway,” says Tim Cicerchi, Product Manager, Industrial Bus and ID Systems, Pepperl+Fuchs.
With ENX gateways, 992 I/O are handled asynchronous to the Ethernet traffic. These fast gateways also scan every AS-i node in 150µs, which enables up to 62 safety e-stops, magnetic switches, and safe outputs in one safety program, said to be easy to use.
Single master, dual master and dual master with built in safety monitor versions are available to satisfy various AS-Interface application requirements. All models come standard with integrated duplicate address, noise, and ground fault detection functionality. Dual network versions feature redundant power supply connections where either power supply can fail, and the gateway will continue to run while reporting the error to the upper level system.
Options of note include a16-channel safety version with up to 4 onboard safety channels, where up to 16 channels can be remotely activated using safe output modules. An available memory card enables users to quickly and easily program remote gateways, and to transfer a gateways configuration and safety program from a failed gateway to a replacement.
“The built in memory card is a very innovative approach to reducing downtime. In the past a maintenance engineer or programmer would have to get a laptop out and connect using Ethernet or RS-232 serial connections. Only then could a download be made to a new gateway. Now a simple swap of memory cards and a few key presses on the keypad will transfer the data automatically,” explains Cicerchi.
Gateways are modules that form an interface between the AS-Interface and higher-level buses. Users can install gateways to provide a solution for complex applications using standard products. The gateways act as a slave for the higher-level bus.
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– Edited by Amanda McLeman, Control Engineering, www.controleng.com