PROFINET now has a ‘wall of fame’ in North America
A real-world test bed and reference network
JOHNSON CITY, TENNESSEE – The PROFI Interface Center (PIC) has completed a PROFINET ‘wall of fame’ in its Test Lab that features PROFINET devices they have tested and certified. This ever-growing network constantly evolves with the latest innovations in PROFINET with contributions from PROFINET developers and vendors from North America and all over the world.
The PIC is part of the global network of Competence Centers (CC), Training Centers (TC) and Test Labs (TL) established by PI, the umbrella organization responsible for PROFIBUS and PROFINET internationally. Certification of PROFINET devices is required through PI. This ensures interoperability between products and the labs are able to support device vendors in case of further conformance questions.
Manager of the PIC, Torsten Paulsen, commented: “We created this installation to feature all of the devices we have certified over the years and put them to use as a ‘real world’ test bed and reference network. We currently have 54 nodes and add more constantly.” A wide range of devices are incorporated onto the wall including remote I/O, drives, vision systems, HMIs, wireless, embedded diagnostics, infrastructure, and security devices.
To date, more than 500 different PROFINET-enabled products have been tested and certified worldwide. “The broad variety of device types and vendors really underlines the openness and multi-vendor support of PROFINET – and gives the end user many implementation choices and investment protection”, continued Paulsen. “Here at the PIC, we have tested devices since 1996. For about four years now, annual PROFINET certification tests have outnumbered PROFIBUS.”
Incorporating top-of-the line PROFINET controllers, such as the Phoenix Contact RFC-470, GE’s RXi, and the Siemens S7-1500, gives the installation a lot of flexibility. For device vendors, it means the PROFINET Device Certification test ensures a clean user experience with most major PROFINET controllers. “We’re running PROFINET over copper, fiber and wireless, using MRP for redundancy, IRT for some of our I/O, PROFIsafe for our safety system, and really leveraging every aspect of PROFINET we can fit together,” said Kyle McMillan, one of the PIC’s PROFINET experts. “We want to show that these features don’t just work on paper, but that they can be implemented across different vendors, platforms, and network media.”
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