Enhancements planned in 2016 for EtherNet/IP specification

ODVA’s technical work includes the adaptation of time sensitive networking along with cybersecurity, application data models and communication integration standards.

By ODVA December 17, 2015

ODVA announced major areas of technical work it plans to undertake in 2016 designed to benefit EtherNet/IP users. One area of focus will be the adaptation of certain emerging standards for time-sensitive networking (TSN) to EtherNet/IP. In particular, ODVA will create enhancements to The EtherNet/IP Specification for frame preemption and stream reservation based on the standards being defined in the IEEE-802.1 projects. ODVA’s adaptation of TSN technologies is a straightforward evolution of the EtherNet/IP technology, which relies on commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) technologies for Ethernet and the Internet to solve demanding applications in industrial automation.

Another area of focus will be on-going enhancements pertaining to cybersecurity for industrial control systems using EtherNet/IP and the common industrial protocol (CIP), the upper layer protocol used by EtherNet/IP as well as other ODVA networks. ODVA introduced CIP Security, which includes standards for message encryption and device authentication between two EtherNet/IP devices. In 2016, ODVA will develop enhancements to the ODVA specifications to add roles and security levels to CIP objects as well as enhancements to certificate handling for EtherNet/IP connections. These changes are designed to enhance the usability, add granularity, and extend security to all networks using CIP itself.

ODVA is also expanding CIP to include data models to facilitate the exchange of application information within EtherNet/IP systems and between EtherNet/IP systems and supervisory systems which may or may not use EtherNet/IP. One application area where specification enhancements are underway is the adaptation of the recommendations in NAMUR NE-107 "Self-monitoring and Diagnosis of Field Devices" to the data format and access methods needed to retrieve such process data from EtherNet/IP field devices. Another application area where enhancements to the ODVA specifications are expected in 2016 is the inclusion of a machine data model and services for machine-to-supervisory communications.

Because EtherNet/IP has been widely accepted as a communication backbone in manufacturing applications throughout discrete, hybrid and process applications, the industry has an increasing need for communication standards for the integration of non-EtherNet/IP devices with EtherNet/IP systems. ODVA is expanding the EtherNet/IP Specification to include standards for the integration of data between EtherNet/IP and HART and IO-Link as a response to this need.


ODVA | Industrial Automation | Technologies and Standards 

– Edited by CFE Media. See more Control Engineering Ethernet stories.