ODVA has published new editions of specifications for the family of CIP Networks, enhancing the EtherNet/IP, DeviceNet, CompoNet, and ControlNet technologies. Updates contain important guidelines for users seeking to deploy open networks in manufacturing automation. Fourteen enhancements are specified, with the following items especially noteworthy, according to ODVA:

  • Because control power distribution is a high cost, high risk element in machine design and installation, significant cost savings are being made through deployments of modular power distribution systems. However, factory automation commonly uses many different control voltages for machine control, and end users have been requesting that components be standardized, including permissible noise limits.

    Therefore, ODVA is defining best practices for auxiliary power circuits by defining a set of consistent rules for components, devices, and wiring practices, initially by addressing the 24 Volt auxiliary wiring for extra low voltage circuits. Because of the vast numbers of products that already support 24 V auxiliary power, the enhancement is an informative addition to the Common Industrial Protocol (CIP) and will provide a unified solution for all CIP Networks. Example uses of this system are E-stop systems, auxiliary power for I/O devices, and PwE (Power with Ethernet). By defining the cabling components and power supply requirements, a standardized system can be designed and built with cables, connectors, and devices that are plug-and-play compatible.

  • With fiber becoming increasingly pervasive in automation systems, ODVA has added an option for a SC-RJ connector, as well as Variant 1 housing suitable for harsh industrial environments. Following from last year's introduction of a 1-mm Polymer Optical Fiber (POF) as a physical layer option for EtherNet/IP, the SC-RJ with POF offers a simple solution for installing and terminating in the field with little or no training, supporting simple termination techniques for fiber preparation and crimping. Fiber polishing is optional, greatly reducing installation time and complexity. In addition to supporting the 1-mm POF, the SC-RJ connector is suitable for all EtherNet/IP-defined fiber types.

Specifications are organized as a group of publications entitled The CIP Networks Library. ODVA expects that devices containing these new enhancements will be available this year. For more information, visit www.odva.org.