PROFINET is being used increasingly as a drive bus. Drive manufacturers are looking for a cost- and time-efficient way to implement PROFINET in their devices. A Swiss drive manufacturer found just such a way to make its linear drive PROFINET-capable in minimum time while also implementing the PROFIdrive drive profile.
PROFINET, the universal communication system based on standard Ethernet technology, acts in combination with the PROFIdrive drive profile and other application profiles such as PROFIsafe and PROFIenergy to form an extremely powerful and future-proof solution for drive technology. With its six application classes, PROFIdrive seamlessly and scalably covers all applications from a simple frequency converter to a high-end servo drive. PROFIdrive can be used without modification in both PROFIBUS and PROFINET applications.
PI offers drive manufacturers a powerful blend of technology for implementation of PROFINET and PROFIdrive in the form of a modular system. This includes PROFINET as the drive bus, the PROFIdrive drive profile as a proven, scalable device profile, and various tools and products that support fast and cost-effective implementation in drive devices. The modular system offers versatile support in the form of consulting, specific development support, free basic technology implementation, and numerous software and hardware components such as ASICs, starter kits, and modules.
This enables drive manufacturers to choose between full in-house development or the use of preconfigured methods and components – based on its business strategy, development capacity, know-how, and time-to-market goal. For fast and cost-effective implementation, in particular, of PROFIdrive in drive devices, the modular system, i.e. the PROFIdrive community, offers a free, source code-based basic technology that is already precertified. This source code is maintained by the Industrial NETworx Community. It supports drive device manufacturers by providing them with a well maintained standard PROFIdrive implementation free of charge as well as a platform for exchange of information and experience.
A finished solution in a few months
The Swiss company Jenny Science is an established provider of compact linear axes of various sizes and associated servo controllers. Its corporate plan includes responding quickly to current market demands with sound concepts. Machine builders are demanding higher speeds, shorter cycle times and jitter times, and end-to-end networking. Jenny Science has responded logically to this by implementing Ethernet-based bus systems in its devices. During a recent project involving the implementation of PROFINET and PROFIdrive in the servo controller of its Xenax Xvi75V8 series, the company faced project-related time pressure to complete the changeover in just a few months. Jenny Science elected to maximize use of ready-made modules from PI’s modular system and minimize in-house development. The servo controllers of the Xenax Xvi75V8 series already had an Ethernet interface and adaptations to various bus systems and drive profiles. PROFINET Conformance Class 3 (IRT) was chosen as the drive bus. For its implementation, the Ertec 200 Ethernet controller was used – a finished ASIC that handles the complete cyclic data processing for PROFINET IRT. The PROFIdrive drive profile and applications classes AK3 (single positioning) and AK4 (servo drives) were also used. The implementation of PROFIdrive made use of the modular system, that is, modules from the Community Project (in particular, parameter manager and frames), combined with in-house development. The previous implementation of an existing CANopen drive profile was left in the device; the integration of PROFIdrive was realized by means of a CiA-402 conversion. This ensured that the servo controller always sees one and the same profile.
“One of our important machine construction customers had decided to use PROFINET and asked us to adapt our linear drive he was using to this new situation. But the amount of time he gave us for the project initially seemed unreasonable. After a more careful analysis, however, it was clear that we could complete the project on time and also very cost-effectively. The solution lay in the use of “ready made” modules that are available for implementation of PROFINET and PROFIdrive. Much of the solution already existed and we were able to fulfill the customer’s expectations in just a few months. We see ourselves here in a pioneering role and are convinced that other drive manufacturers will follow the same path.”
Alois Jenny, Managing Director of Jenny Science AG