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IO-Link: Did You Know

Did you know that IO-Link can be integrated into any fieldbus system?

One of the most important features of IO-Link is its fieldbus neutrality. It allows the IO-Link functionality to be connected to nearly any fieldbus. Either the standardized mappings in fieldbuses, e.g. for PROFIBUS, PROFINET, EtherCat, and Sercos, or manufacturer-specific mappings for EtherNet/IP, CANopen, Modbus, CC-Link, and AS-Interface can be used for this. IO-Link is also recognized as an international standard according to IEC 61131-9 and thus has gained acceptance worldwide, independent of the respective prevailing fieldbus system. Therefore, users can count on IO-Link to provide an internationally accepted solution with long-term reliability which is appropriate for all automation environments. This entails high investment protection for manufacturers and users – particularly with a view to future applications.

Further, a comprehensive fieldbus and controller-independent description (IODD= IO Device Description) has been standardized. With this, it is possible to enable any engineering tool to provide the associated plain text description electronically for device-specific properties such as process image, parameters, or diagnostics. This allows central access to all IO-Link devices from a single tool.

Every IO-Link device can be identified uniquely on the basis of its internal data. This is an important element for quality assurance and the functionalities related to Industrie 4.0. Besides digitalized secure and lossless measured value transmission to the machine controller, additional information can enter the ERP system in this way. Thus IO-Link enables the required consistency from the control level to the automation level (fieldbus/Ethernet) up to cloud applications.

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