Sercos and FDT push towards open systems

22 January 2009

Sercos International (SI) has joined forces with the FDT Group AISBL to develop open systems, announcing an agreement to create an annex to the FDT specification for Sercos III. The organisations say this will create the first high-performance real-time Ethernet communication standard to support FDT Technology.

FDT Technology standardises the communication interface between fieldbus devices and engineering tools. Extending the FDT specification to Sercos III will allow users to configure Sercos III devices via FDT’s powerful DTM device drivers. DTMs offer special functionality for detailed device configuration and analysis via a graphical user interface. The DTM application opens a window for the start-up, parameterisation and diagnosis of the fieldbus devices, thus reducing the complexity of the application and increasing transparency for users and service technicians.

The collaboration between the FDT Group and SI promotes the trend towards open standards in factory automation from the field to machine control. Design engineers and developers are able to combine products from different manufacturers in their automation systems due to the clearly defined interfaces.

‘The FDT Group’s collaboration with Sercos offers users the greatest possible transparency and freedom of choice,’ stressed Flavio Tolfo, managing director of the Belgium based FDT Group. ‘The combination of these two open standards, supported by many manufacturers, reduces start-up times and increases the security of investments.’

‘The collaboration agreement extends the range of Sercos III applications beyond drive communication,’ according to Peter Lutz, managing director of Sercos International e.V. ‘The FDT/DTM specification is another important step on the way to making Sercos III a universal real-time network for all automation applications.’

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