Download the PDF ; The PROFIblog ; Full version
PI North America Executive Director Michael J Bryant gets excited about the recent GAM
A summary of the best from the GAM
The 2012 program draws to a close; now 2103 is on the horizon
There's one more chance to take part in 2012
A basic slide set to help you learn more about PROFIBUS
Of Blogs and Bumpless Redundancy
Switzerland, Poland, South East Asia, China, Australia, Ireland, South Africa
Slave ASIC, Ethernet converter, PROFINET vision
"OUR BEST EVER": PI North America Executive Director Michael J Bryant (left) writes: "Hi everyone, I'm delighted to tell you that our 18th General Assembly Meeting (GAM) turned out to be our best ever.

"One of the most impressive PROFINET presentations I've ever had the pleasure of listening to was given by Mike Bastian of Ford Powertrain, who explained the thinking behind his automation standardization efforts involving PROFINET for communications. We heard not only about Mike's control strategies but also about how the initiatives he has started are now rolling out into other Ford plants too. There's more about Mike's presentation below, together with details of another application story presented by Jim Simmons of DuPont, where PROFIBUS and PROFIBUS PA play a big role. Jim's become a big fan of fieldbus and I recommend reading his concluding statement.

"It's reassuring that PROFIBUS continues to flourish even as PROFINET is escalating its market share. However, I believe that the greater flexibility, higher performance and considerably greater versatility of PROFINET will become increasingly important. In fact, that theme is expected to show up more and more strongly in our own marketing efforts. A new PROFINET campaign is in preparation for North America now, so expect to see exciting developments in the new year.

"There's a longer report from our GAM below and I hope you enjoy reading it, also the rest of this newsletter"

18th GENERAL ASSEMBLY MEETING REPORT: Over 60 North American members attended the 18th General Assembly Meeting in September. PI North America Executive Director Mike Bryant (see above) in his opening address reported that the membership had passed 150 just before GAM and that a new web site is under construction integrating the previously-separate "All Things PROFINET" site into a re-designed  On global progress he said that the PROFIBUS market is expected to grow in 2012 by a further 4 million nodes, to reach a total of about 44 million. "So we are still seeing considerable PROFIBUS growth." In process automation, PROFIBUS PA continues to expand its market share while PROFINET is predicted to become the Industrial Ethernet market leader shortly. Progress with PROFINET is very good, he said. "Today, PROFINET accounts for every 5th device sold compared to some years ago when it was 1 in 15.".

Keynote speaker on Day 1 was Mike Bastian, Global Controls Manager for Ford Powertrain (left), who explained the steps his company has taken in the past five years to achieve greater controls standardization. Ownership of hardware and software is a part of this, he said, but with "ownership" comes responsibility, which makes people nervous. "But it's the right thing to do because it brings advantages such as better control, closer integration with IT, improved throughputs and better diagnostics." His department is now looking towards energy management where "we believe a lot of work can be done." He explained how PROFINET plays an important communications role: its robustness and speed has supported the development of a "virtual RFID system" that dispenses with the need for parts tagging, said Bastian. Later, Stefan Gallmann of Phoenix Contact (left) described how PROFINET is used to integrate the control systems of wind turbines, where it is supporting safety too. He mentioned a turbine array in Ireland with 80 turbines where fast update speeds are achieved using PROFINET.

Day 2 saw a return to the process automation topic, with Hunter Harrington from the PIC (PROFI Interface Center) in Johnson City, which is also a North American Competence Center, describing the PROFINET proxy solution for connecting to sub-networks such as HART and FOUNDATION Fieldbus. Later, PI Chairman Karsten Schneider (fourth picture) described the 3.02 Profile for PROFIBUS PA which defines process-specific functionality such as device exchange similar to 4-20mA by automatic ident number adaption, simplified but powerful diagnostics and faster parameter transmission. Schneider also presented an update on PROFIenergy, the special profile that helps PROFINET users manage energy consumption more efficiently. The process theme was continued by Dupont's Jim Simmons (lower picture), who described the fieldbus "learning curve" that was triggered by his company's purchase of a PCS7 control system. "Through that project I have become a fieldbus evangelist within DuPont," he said, adding "I believe any new control system installation should have to justify NOT using fieldbus technology."

PROFIblog also carried a report on the GAM. FIND IT HERE .

OUTSTANDING SUCCESS FOR 2012 TRAINING CLASSES: As the highly successful 2012 program comes to its conclusion we can report that over 2000 people registered. This was an outstanding result says Carl Henning, PROFINET training guru, and up on 2011 by 16% indicating that demand for training is far from saturated. "We've got exciting plans for 2013 and with a new advertising campaign in preparation we expect our air miles to rise even further next year!" he adds. Watch for the January issue of PROFINEWS North America to find 2013 dates and venues. Or monitor this page. A section on transitioning from PROFIBUS to PROFINET is included if you're wondering about the implications of upgrading. "There's no better way to learn about PROFIBUS and PROFINET than these FREE one-day events," says Carl. But one clear message from 2012 is "book early", as seats get filled quickly. The remainder of the 2012 program is:

Nov   Los Angeles, CA Nov 13th
Dec   Baltimore, MD Dec 6th
  Watch this page for 2013 updates.

CERTRIFIED TRAINING CERTIFIED NETWORK ENGINEER CLASSES: Like the free Training Classes above, our certified engineer classes turned out to very popular in 2012, with extra dates being added to cope with demand. There are still a few seats left. If you haven't been "certified" yet, why not join one of our forthcoming classes. Successful attendees get their name listed at and Certified status can really boost a career! The remaining classes for 2012 are:

Nov   Peterborough, ON
Nov 13-16
Dec     Johnson City, TN
December 3-7

On-site classes can be arranged. Contact the PI North America office, or email: Watch for our 2013 PROGRAM HERE .

NEW LEARNING RESOURCE FOR PROFIBUS: There's a new slide set available for engineers wanting to learn about the world's most popular fieldbus, PROFIBUS! It deals with all the fundamentals and a lot more besides and is a great way to get started on the road towards lower costs, greater efficiency and better productivity. DOWNLOAD IT HERE .

BLOG ACCELERATOR: Carl Henning has vowed to bring his blog posts back up to one per week and so far he's been true to his word. As well as getting quite "snarky" with bloggers who say bad things about PROFIBUS and PROFINET, Carl is good at posting entertaining items that veer sideways sometimes but which are always relevant. The blogosphere takes in various other social outlets too, so PROFIblog is great for keeping up to date with "all things automation." PROFIblog

BUMPLESS REDUNDANCY IN 60 SECONDS: The MinutePROFINET channel on YouTube has published yet another vid designed to introduce you to the features of PROFINET in easy chunks. This one is barely 60 seconds long and includes a full overview of redundancy. Bumpless redundancy is a unique feature of PROFINET. BUMP HERE to find out more. It'll only take a minute!

Switzerland: The first Regional PI Association (RPA) outside of Germany has just celebrated its 20th anniversary with a booth party held at the same venue where it was formed. Speaking at the party, Chairman Max Felser said: "It is interesting to ask "what does the success of our organization depend on?" On one side there are easy-to-use technologies. On the other is the networking of highly motivated and committed people around the world. Surely, without these people, PROFIBUS and PROFINET would never have reached this level of success." SWITZERLAND.

Poland : PROFIBUS Poland together with PITC Poland and several member companies organized in Katowice a workshop on the IO-Link standard. POLAND.

South East Asia: The PROFIBUS/PROFINET Association has conducted a highly successful seminar in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, with 100 attending. SOUTH EAST ASIA.

China: In September PI-China hosted the first "Training Trainer" workshop on PROFIBUS and PROFINET in Beijing. PI-China also attended the China International Industry Fair (CIIF) in Shanghai where 100,000 trade visitors were expected. CHINA.

Australia: PROFIBUS Australia has formed a promotional partnership with the trade magazine PACE, to facilitate widespread awareness of fieldbus. It has also enhanced the quality and availability of Certified PROFIBUS Training classes. AUSTRALIA.

Ireland: PROFIBUS Ireland's biennial Industrial Communications workshop was hosted in September by Limerick University's Automation Research Center (ARC) in conjunction with CoNeT, an EU-funded project focused on training in Industrial Ethernet. Over 65 attended. IRELAND.

South Africa: The PROFIBUS Competence Center of South Africa (PICC) has seen a large increase in the number of PROFIBUS and PROFINET callouts and audits. The PICC has visited places as far apart as Hotazhel (pronounced "Hot as Hell") in the Kalahari Desert to the coastal town of Port Elizabeth, where cars are made. SOUTH AFRICA .

PROFIBUS DP SLAVE ASICs: Things going quiet for PROFIBUS? asks chip company profichip. Definitely not it seems, because the company is shipping samples of a new PROFIBUS DP ASIC called VPC3+S. The device, based on the earlier BGA package version, is now offered in the LQFP-48 format for easier handling and quality control. It's software compatible and takes up 60% less board space. profichip.

REAL-TIME ETHERNET TO ETHERNET CONVERSIONS: Hilscher's gateway family netTAP 100 now supports 20 Real-Time Ethernet/Ethernet to Ethernet protocol conversion combinations, including PROFINET. netTAP 100 now supports nearly 200 protocol combinations, all of which are ready to load as firmware during start up. The firmware can be downloaded now. HILSCHER.

VISION SYSTEM FOR PROFINET: The Teledyne DALSA BOA smart camera is a compact, highly integrated optical inspection tool for controlling quality and increasing productivity. BOA smart cameras offer scalable vision solutions to satisfy a wide range of applications and are fully loaded with iNspect Express or Sherlock vision software to satisfy many types of automation task.  TELEDYNE.

Published by PI North America

16101 N. 82nd Street, Suite 3B

Scottsdale, AZ 85260

©2012 PI North America


A Member of the International Community
Subscribe here to receive PROFINEWS North America free of charge.


GridConnect - Your networking products authority!