August 1, 2005
IEC 61158-2 and AS-Interface are coming soon for PROFINET. With the project to integrate Interbus into PROFINET completed, PROFIBUS International has turned its attention to the integration of AS-Interface and the IEC 61158-2 based PROFIBUS PA solution for process automation.
The IEC 61158-2 project will offer process automation plants an easy way to connect PROFIBUS PA process devices into a PROFINET environment. It will mean that PROFIBUS PA process instruments can be connected directly to PROFINET without need for an intermediate network. Proxy technology will be used to create transparent connectivity from field instrumentation right up to enterprise level IT systems. The IEC 61158-2 proxy will incorporate the link device needed to power the bus and support IS operations.
PROFIBUS International Chairman Edgar Kuester said: “Currently, PROFIBUS leads in process automation with well over 2.1 million installed devices, because we made our PROFIBUS DP solution fully transparent with PROFIBUS PA, enabling process instruments to co-exist with discrete devices. That is what most process plants need. Shortly, we will offer the same kind of connectivity for PROFINET. No changes to existing PROFIBUS PA slave devices will be necessary.”
PROFIBUS International also plans to integrate AS-Interface, the actuator/sensor protocol optimized for low-level devices such as pneumatics and ON/OFF devices. By integrating AS-Interface PROFIBUS International will open up the possibility of direct connection of low level field device networks to PROFINET. The proxy will act as an AS-Interface master, enabling field devices to appear as remote I/O.