The PI North America “year” revolves around our annual General Assembly Meeting held every September here in Scottsdale, AZ. This year’s installment marks the 22nd anniversary, since the organization was founded as the PROFIBUS Trade Organization in 1994. With the 2016 GAM now in our rearview mirror, we can reflect on the progress made during the year leading up to, and during the event.
The General Assembly Meeting is an opportunity to meet face-to-face with members, end-users, and the press. Principally an open forum for discussion, the event provides members with access to other members in a noncompetitive setting. This year was particularly engaging with many notable presentations on the current state of the organization as well as its future direction.
In addition to providing our members with a forum for discussion about past and future activities, the General Assembly Meeting is an opportunity to hear from end-users. End users present their cutting edge applications using the PROFIBUS and PROFINET technologies. Of note were the number of case studies involving wireless and safety that push the boundaries of what’s imaginable through automation.
When a user decides on PROFINET, he has a choice of thousands of different products developed and available worldwide today, such as I/O devices, actuators, sensors, network and infrastructure components, and controllers. This variety gives the user maximum freedom to design his own plant and automation systems. The device manufacturer has access to a wide range of different hardware- and software-based basic technologies for optimal implementation of the PROFINET interface based on his requirements.
Did you know that all well-known chip manufacturers offer chips for IO-Link devices or masters?
Over ten chip manufacturers have already listed their products. These offer a suitable chip for every device class, ranging from simple drivers/transceivers to microcontrollers. Several manufactures have also integrated IO-Link in their system or network controllers.
Secure and stable networks form the basis of high performance industrial communication. The only chance for their longevity is that they remain in perfect working condition. Is this currently the case? VORTEX 2016 for the first time delivers a comprehensive appraisal of the status of industrial networks across technologies and countries.
Highlighted this month: Australia has 30 certified PROFINET and PROFIBUS training classes scheduled for the remainder of 2016. PI Middle East has an upcoming seminar focused on food and beverage in their Dubai office. IO-Link has enhanced their workshops. And many classes are on the schedule for the balance of 2016.
The product news this month is from MESCO Engineering and Weidmüller. MESCO’s Software Library simplifies the development of safe drives in accordance with IEC 61800-5-2. Weidmüller “u-remote” provides safe, digital I/O modules for PROFIsafe with integrated protection and precise diagnostics in a small format.