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IO-Link Wireless specification completed

29 May 2018

The IO-Link community has completed work on the specifications for IO-Link Wireless and an approved version has been published.

IO-Link was the first technology for communicating with sensors and actuators below the fieldbus level to be adopted as an international standard (IEC 61131-9).

IO-Link Wireless expands on this, defining wireless communication between sensors/actuators and controllers in the industrial automation environment. Performance, functionality and capacity are said to be comparable to cable-bound solutions.

IO-Link Wireless offers real-time latency of 5 ms for communication with up to 40 devices (sensors and actuators). Reliability lies above a packet-error rate (PER) of 10-9, while the rates of other comparable wireless standards, such as WLAN, Bluetooth and Zigbee, are around 10-3. IO-Link Wireless supports roaming functions and the option of using battery-operated or energy-harvesting sensors with minimal energy consumption in a real-time network. A key feature of IO-Link Wireless is its compatibility with industry- and process-automation protocols. Planning, commissioning, operation and maintenance can all be carried out using standard IO-Link tools, ensuring backward compatibility with cable-bound IO-Link systems.

In parallel with the specification work, the necessary test specifications and test scenarios needed when the first suppliers develop their components for the new system are already being defined in the IO-Link wireless working group.

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