In recent years, safety technologies have progressed from conventional technology based on relay controls to digital technology with special bus systems to integrated solutions using standard bus systems. PROFIBUS International (PI) is the trendsetter in this new safety technology and technology leader with PROFIsafe. PROFIsafe is defined for PROFIBUS and PROFINET and is the only solution which completely covers factory and process automation applications. PROFIsafe has taken over the market-leading position with this concept. More than 20,000 PROFIsafe systems and nearly 190,000 PROFIsafe nodes are already in use worldwide, 10% of which in process automation.
Safety applications cannot be ignored in automation technology. They protect people from injury (e.g. with presses, automated handling systems, moving parts), they protect machines and goods from damage and they protect people and environment in the process industry from injury, e.g. by the escape of hazardous materials (overflow, over pressure, temperatures). PROFIsafe on PROFIBUS and on PROFINET IO is used for secure communication, in factory automation and in process automation. The spectrum of available devices includes secure input and output modules of the remote I/O to light curtains, laser scanners and transmitters to drives with integrated safety functions and robots.
With PROFIsafe, safety technologies can be combined with the benefits of standard automation systems in terms of control systems, field devices and communication. The PROFIsafe layer covers the complete transmission path from sensor to safety control and even proprietary backplanes, if necessary. The result is