IP Communication Types

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In this video I will cover the various IP Communication Types used in Industrial Ethernet networks today.

Gone are the days when electricians and engineers spec and pull bundles of I/O conductors and interlock wires to-from machinery, robotics, and automation systems. As a result running 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 inch conduits containing an abundance of control wires is a thing of the past. Now, we can run much smaller conduits that contain merely a network cables or cables, and perhaps a couple of low voltage power cables to power our network enabled devices.

While an engineer has many different network protocols to choose from when designing an automation system – ranging from DeviceNET, ControlNet, Modbus and the list goes on – modern day automation system are almost entirely leveraging Ethernet technologies or perhaps more appropriately EtherNet/IP technologies in recent years.

So you might be asking what is the difference between traditional Ethernet and EtherNet/IP?

Well as Wikipedia explains, “EtherNet/IP is an industrial network protocol that adapts the Common Industrial Protocol to standard Ethernet. EtherNet/IP is one of the leading industrial protocols in the United States and is widely used in a range industries including factory, hybrid and process. The EtherNet/IP and CIP technologies are managed by ODVA, Inc., a global trade and standards development organization founded in 1995 with over 300 corporate members.

EtherNet/IP uses both of the most widely deployed collections of Ethernet standards –the Internet Protocol suite and IEEE 802 project – to define the features and functions for its transport, network, data link and physical layers. CIP uses its object-oriented design to provide EtherNet/IP with the services and device profiles needed for real-time control applications and to promote consistent implementation of automation functions across a diverse ecosystem of products. In addition, EtherNet/IP adapts key elements of Ethernet’s standard capabilities and services to the CIP object model framework, such as the User Datagram Protocol (UDP), which EtherNet/IP uses to transport I/O messages.”

As a result of the explosion of Ethernet technologies engineers and trades personnel are tasked with getting up to speed and understanding these technologies in order to efficiently do their job. Moreover, the challenge with networks in general is the electrician or engineer can no longer simply put a meter on the wire to see if he or she is getting the right signal at the right time.

To aid in this challenge, PLCGuru’s.NET is compiling a video series on YouTube. This video is part our Networking Essentials video series and is also viewable right here on our Learn PLC’s page.

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