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Interbus’ ‘next generation’

06 May 2008

Interbus may be 20 years old, but development activity is still vigorous and is now set to launch a new-generation ‘SUPI 4’ slave chip that will provide new advantages for integrators and end users. The tiny chip has 90,000 transistors and is capable of propelling transmission speeds to 16 Mb/s, yet it is fully compatible with previous 500K and 2 Mb/s systems.

Interbus people like to say that the chip proves the technological potential of their fieldbus has not yet been exhausted. With an installed base of 13.5 million nodes, that is surely good news.

‘A big advantage will be that it will help users integrate with Profinet systems,’ said Steffen Horn of Phoenix Contact, who was in the Interbus stand at Hannover Fair. And indeed that is one of the goals set out by Phoenix Contact when it embraced Profinet a few years ago. SUPI 4 allows Interbus devices in Profinet networks to be identified with manufacturer and device ID, order number, and other relevant data. Device parameters can be entered directly in the user interface of the Profinet programming system. Device-specific diagnostic messages can be displayed in the individual control system as a Profinet IO channel error. As a result of the basic profile, the user automatically receives the corresponding plain text messages.


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