In a challenging economy, industrial manufacturers look for ways to reduce costs. For example, many now harness standard PCs or internally developed embedded systems. They develop control applications and host them on PCs. As well as lower cost, this can provide advantages such as performance and flexibility.
The problem, however, is networking. These machines usually have an Ethernet interface but without real-time capabilities. This isolates them from the rest of the facility. It adds complexity to factory operations such as having to manually transfer data from the PC to other systems. Management lacks a consolidated view of shop-floor operations.
To address this situation, Siemens has released a PROFINET Driver which allows the user to implement a PROFINET Controller on a standard PC. As the software utilizes a standard Ethernet interface, no special hardware is required. This driver has an easy to use API (Advanced Programmer Interface) allowing the user to realize control applications in very short time. This includes individual PROFINET lines in which machines are not networked together. For Windows users, cycle times of 32 ms are achieved. For those using a real-time operating system, the PROFINET Driver can achieve cycle times of as little as 1 ms.
The PROFINET Driver is shipped as source code on a CD. This makes it easy for proprietary solutions to be ported to any real-time operating system. The hardware configuration can be accomplished within the Siemens TIA Portal or without the need of an engineering tool by using the open XML interface. The CD includes a development license, as well as sample applications for machine builders. Note that for developing on a Microsoft Windows platform Microsoft Visual Studio is required. Developing for a Linux platform one can use Eclipse. Anyone using the compiled runtime software of the PROFINET Driver requires a single runtime license for each copy.
- PROFINET controller
- Quantity structure: 16 devices for Windows, 128 devices for Debian Linux
- Standard implementation for Debian Linux with RT patch and Windows
- Fast Start Up
- RT advanced startup
- Shared device
- License-free engineering with TIA Portal V13 SP1
- Option handling
- Remanent store of MIB2: programming of diagnose possible
- Automatic address adaption
- Adaption of device and Vendor ID
- Including six standard examples for machine builder incl. C-Code and Step 7 V13 SP1 projects