Note to Manufacturing Facilities: It's All About Ethernet

What Key Trends Will Industrial Networking See This Year? We Asked Some Industry Experts to Predict Important Trends For 2014. See What They Said.

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As more manufacturing facilities switch to industrial Ethernet, There's a need for intelligent technologies to support the move.

What key trends will industrial networking see this year? We asked some industry experts to predict important trends for 2014. Responses indicate that advances will continue to come in fiber networks, growth of the Internet of Things, low-smoke, zero-halogen material and high-flex and armored cable.

For example, a skyrocketing demand for high-bandwidth applications such as Internet and data storage is causing certain industries to migrate to fiber network infrastructures, says B&B Electronics technical support engineer Susan Stanley. That's because fiber networks feature higher bandwidths, better security, bi-directional transmission of data and remote management tools, and they can cover distances up to 100 km compared to 100 m. "Fiber suppliers have developed 10-G fiber optics, which support an array of protocols for applications, while at the same time making upgrades to networks seamless," she says. "As is typical in technological advancement, need is what drives the development of new components and devices."
 
See Also:  Don't Over-Specify Ethernet Switches

Says L-com global connectivity product marketing manager Peter McNeil, "A key industry trend we see for the machine design market includes more compact designs where space is very limited. Also, low-smoke, zero halogen (LSZH) materials are becoming standard for most applications because they prevent the release of toxic and corrosive gases when burned. Also, he says, robotics is becoming more widespread, upping the use of high-flex cables that provide 1 million to 10 million flex cycles, depending on the frequency of the bending. Armored cable assemblies also are being used more often in industrial and manufacturing settings where physical impacts could potentially damage cabling.

As More Manufacturing Facilities Switch to Industrial Ethernet, There's a Need for Intelligent Technologies to Support the Move

What key trends will industrial networking see this year? We asked some industry experts to predict important trends for 2014. Responses indicate that advances will continue to come in fiber networks, growth of the Internet of Things, low-smoke, zero-halogen material and high-flex and armored cable.

For example, a skyrocketing demand for high-bandwidth applications such as Internet and data storage is causing certain industries to migrate to fiber network infrastructures, says B&B Electronics technical support engineer Susan Stanley. That's because fiber networks feature higher bandwidths, better security, bi-directional transmission of data and remote management tools, and they can cover distances up to 100 km compared to 100 m. "Fiber suppliers have developed 10-G fiber optics, which support an array of protocols for applications, while at the same time making upgrades to networks seamless," she says. "As is typical in technological advancement, need is what drives the development of new components and devices."
 
See Also:  Don't Over-Specify Ethernet Switches

Says L-com global connectivity product marketing manager Peter McNeil, "A key industry trend we see for the machine design market includes more compact designs where space is very limited. Also, low-smoke, zero halogen (LSZH) materials are becoming standard for most applications because they prevent the release of toxic and corrosive gases when burned. Also, he says, robotics is becoming more widespread, upping the use of high-flex cables that provide 1 million to 10 million flex cycles, depending on the frequency of the bending. Armored cable assemblies also are being used more often in industrial and manufacturing settings where physical impacts could potentially damage cabling.

BB  Extend the Network    
iMcV-10G-Converter SFP+ media converter is a small, pluggable (SFP+) modular device to connect high-bandwidth network segments running different fiber types to extend the overall network’s distance. Protocol independent, it can be installed in 20-, six-, three-, two- or one-slot chasses. Modules are hot-swappable, eliminating the need to power down the chassis when upgrading or troubleshooting one module.
B&B Electronics;
800/346-3119
 1406Turck Around the I/O Block    
FEN20 I/O in-cabinet, block I/O stations make digital I/O suitable for industrial Ethernet layers such as EtherNet/ IP, Profinet or Modbus TCP. The unit comes with 16 configurable I/O points, with power isolation between I/O zones. The device can be addressed via an external rotary switch or a web server. FEN20 supports DHCP and LLDP protocols, and has LEDs for status and basic troubleshooting.
Turck;
800/544-7769
 1406Moxa Industrial Ethernet Gateway  
MGate 5105-MB-EIP is an industrial Ethernet gateway for Modbus RTU/ASCII/TCP and EtherNet/IP network communication. It can be used as a Modbus master or slave to collect data and exchange data with EtherNet/IP devices. The latest exchange data is also stored in the gateway, which converts stored Modbus data into EtherNet/IP packets, so the EtherNet/IP scanner can control or monitor Modbus devices.
Moxa Americas;
888/669-2872
 1406Acromag Signals for Sensors  
BusWorks XT Ethernet I/O modules connect discrete signals from sensors and actuators directly to an EtherNet/IP, Modbus/TCP or Profinet measurement and control system network. The unit has dual-Ethernet ports and removable, front-facing terminal blocks, and it can attach to a rail power bus. The modules operate from -40 to 70 °C with noise immunity and surge protection. Free software is available for configuration and setup.
Acromag;
248/624-1541
 1406Advantech Energy-Efficient Ethernet    
EKI-3000 unmanaged switches include a five-port and an eight-port Ethernet switch, which come in 10/100 and Gigabit versions. The switches have dedicated ports that prioritize traffic to help avoid latency issues. Other functions cut power consumption by up to 60% as defined in the IEEE 802.3az energy efficiency standard.
Advantech Industrial Automation;
800/205-7940
 1406ASI It’s All about Connections    
RAI-RJ45S through-panel connector has a modular, DIN-rail mounting base. Its hinged cover features a lever-actuated latch for a tight lock, and a form-fitting gasket protects against dust and liquids. The unit meets NEMA Type 12, 4, 4x and IP65 ratings in shielded and unshielded versions.
ASI;
877/650-5160

 1406Beckhoff Bus Coupler    
EK9300 Profinet IO bus coupler lets a Profinet controller exchange data with one or more EtherCAT, Profinet and Profibus systems as a flexible gateway for real-time communication between the networks. The unit converts messages from Profinet IO to the EtherCAT E-Bus signal. One IO station consists of an EK9300 bus coupler and any number of EtherCAT terminals. The coupler supports the Profinet RT protocol for use with Profinet IO networks.
Beckhoff Automation;
952/890-0000;

 1406Belden  Forestall Cyberattacks    
Eagle One security router protects industrial systems against network incidents and cyberattacks. The unit works in temperatures ranging from -40 to 70 °C, and complies with OSHA’s hazardous location conditions, ATEX directives and Germanischer Lloyd classifications. Users can configure settings offline to avoid contact with a live device.
Belden;
800/235-3361

 1406L com Take a Right    
A special channel separator and load bar in LSZH right-angle Ethernet patch cables let the cables meet Cat 6 standards. The cables are built with an aluminum/polyester shield for protection against electromagnetic and radio frequency interferences. The low-smoke, zero-halogen cables come in a wide variety of lengths, colors and connector orientations.
L-com;
800/341-5266

 1406Pepperl+Fuchs Splitter Boxes    
G10 Series AS-interface splitter boxes with stainless steel coupling nuts have a one-piece housing with IP67/IP68/IP69K ratings. They feature gold-plated and machined contacts, mount in tight spaces, and are immune to vibration. The splitters can withstand caustic chemicals and high-pressure washdown environments.
Pepperl+Fuchs;
330/486-0001
 1406Phoenix PoE Switch    
FL Switch 1001T-4POE Industrial Ethernet switch supports PoE (802.3af) and PoE+ (802.3at) on four ports. The unmanaged switch is classified as power source equipment (PSE), and uses Alternative B for power delivery. It meets the 2009 IEEE 802.3at specification.
Phoenix Contact;
800/322-3225

BB Convert the Media    
Ethernet to Belden 9463 Blue Hose industrial media converter upgrades legacy Allen-Bradley Remote I/O systems, letting users run Remote I/O and EtherNet/IP data at the same time on existing Belden Blue Hose cable. This allows upgrading of individual nodes during scheduled downtime. Converter components are plug-and-play, with no configuration needed. The converters provides 57.6-K and 115.2-K baud rates. Repeaters are available for networks to provide distances to 10,000 ft.
ProSoft Technology;
661/716-5100

 1406Rockwell. Safety Relay Interface 
EtherNet/IP network interface lets up to six Guardmaster safety relays communicate in real time, and provides terminal-level diagnostics such as cross faults and overcurrents over an EtherNet/IP network. The interface complies with ODVA requirements for linear, star and ring architectures.
Rockwell Automation;
414/328-2000

 1406Siemens Ring Redundancy    
Scalance XM-400 industrial Ethernet switches include the XM416-4C switch, which connects up to 16 network stations, and has 16 RJ45 ports and four SFP slots for optical plug-in transceivers. It also offers the XM408-8C switch, which has eight RJ45 ports and eight SFP slots. The DIN-rail-mountable switches include separate port extenders to extend the basic devices to a maximum of 24 ports. Switch IP addresses can be read out locally with near-field communication (NFC) for network diagnostics using the web browser.
Siemens Industry;
770/751-2000

 1406Ultra Electronics Self-Healing    
EOTec G408M industrial Gigabit Ethernet switch includes a self-healing ring capability that detects fiber or cable breaks on any of the ring ports, and reroutes network traffic in milliseconds. An alarm output signals errors to the PLC or other supervisory devices. A variety of small form-factor pluggable (SFP) fiber transceivers are available for different fiber types and lengths. The switch provides 10-30-Vdc operation (15 W) and dual power inputs. It can be DIN-rail or panel-mounted, and is certified Class 1, Division 2, Groups A, B, C and D, as well as ATEX Group II, Cat. 3 (Zone 2), and EEX na II T4 X for hazardous areas.
Ultra Electronics;
512/434-2830
 1406Wago CAN Gateway Module     
750-658 CAN I/O gateway module supports CAN Layer 2, and can be integrated into a CANopen, SAE-J1939 or DeviceNet network by using CoDeSys function blocks. The module operates in different modes that let it perform a detailed analysis of the unaffected CANbus through passive snooping, send and receive CAN telegrams, or generate CAN telegrams directly from the process map.
Wago,
800/346-7245

 1406Weidmuller Remote I/O    
U-remote is a distributed I/O device with 11.5-mm wide, hot-swappable slices, simple plug-in connections and a built-in web server that provides real-time network access to the 64 I/O slices/cards connected to a single fieldbus coupler for Profinet, EtherCAT, Modbus TCP or Ethernet TCP/IP protocols. The system works with as many as 256 DI/DOs in 20 μs.
Weidmüller;
800/849-9343

 1406in13q1p micronor Connection Protection    
MR398-JB series fiber-optic junction boxes are designed to join two fiber-optic cables and environmentally protect the connection. The product provides a turnkey solution for installing optical interconnect “hard points” in harsh-environment cabling applications. The junction boxes are designed to seal the incoming cables, while accommodating varying diameters of optical cable. Standard models include LC Duplex to LC Duplex, LC Duplex to ODVA LC, and ODVA LC to ODVA LC.
Micronor;
805/499-0114
 1406in13q1p precision Snooper Duper   
The Super Snooper line of Modbus scanners includes the ProVu PD6080 Series of 1/8-DIN digital panel meters, and can be set up as Modbus RTU masters, slaves or snoopers, monitoring multiple Modbus devices for up to 16 process variables, including level, interface level, density and temperature. The meters provide two independently programmed analog inputs and an array of math functions for sum, difference, average and ratio calculations. They include dual analog inputs and an RS-485 serial communications module, allowing integration of existing 4-20-mA transmitters and Modbus devices on the same display.
Precision Digital;
508/655-7300
 1406in13q1p ad Plenty of Zip
Zipport multi-wire connectors and accessories include 10A, 16A and 32B frame sizes made of heavy-duty metal or thermoplastic housings. Connector hoods are available with top-entry and side-entry cable passages, and feature Pg threaded cable passages. Accessories include IP66 and IP68 cable glands, Pg-to-NPT adapters and blanking plugs. Insert plates are available in blank, reducer and cutout styles.
AutomationDirect;
770-889-2858
 cd1310p lapp Cable and More    
Lapp’s 700-page 2013 North American Catalog includes an expanded range of products, technical tips and service offers, and cross references technical product information and custom design solutions. It also has detailed technical information on standard and high-flex cables, industrial connectors, assembly and system solutions, automation technology and technical accessories.  
LappUSA;
800/774-3539
 in14q2p ge Protocols Provided    
PACSystems RX3i modules provide communication protocols as in-rack solutions, standardized on Profinet. The modules include IEC61850, DNP3 and IEC60870-5-104  with Ethernet-based communication protocols, enabling improved access to data and time-stamping of events via object-oriented programming. The new modules enable two-way communication between SCADA and intelligent electrical device (IED) levels. Support of fiber optics simplifies system design, and provides more reliable communication and greater transmission distance.
GE Intelligent Platforms;
800/433-2682

 























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