Garrettcom Europe makes it easy to connect multiple panel devices into Ethernet networks

26 January 2010

New Ethernet switches provide eight RJ45 ports and a single fibre up-link port in a compact, rugged, affordable unit.

As factory automation control systems continue the migration from fieldbus networks to Ethernet networks, requirements are growing for more affordable methods of integrating the rapidly growing numbers of Ethernet enabled products into the network. To address this need, GarrettCom Europe has introduced the CP80 series of hardened Ethernet switches.

Meeting the requirements of a wide variety of factory automation and SCADA applications, the CP80 is designed for panel or DIN-rail mounting in control cabinets, and provides eight 10/00 RJ-45 ports for connection of co-located devices, such as PLCs, automation equipment, sensors, WAPs and other industrial Ethernet-enabled devices. It then provides a 100Mb fibre up-link port to connect this cluster of control devices to the wider factory network.

The fibre port is available as standard with a multi-mode ST, SC, LC or MTRJ connector for transmission distances up to 2km, or with a single-mode LC, ST, or SC connector to support transmission distances of up to 40km.

The CP80 delivers true plug-and play operation, with the switches ready to run straight out of the box. In use, front-mounted LEDs provide status information on each port. For easy expansion of the network as control requirements evolve, multiple CP80 series switches can be linked in a cascaded or ‘daisy-chained’ manner.

GarrettCom Europe Sales & Marketing Manager David Moss comments: “Ethernet networks in factory control systems provide the benefits of interoperability, high bandwidth and universal connectivity, all at an economical cost. In addition, fibre-based Ethernet networks ensure noise immune communications even over large distances. But users can only take advantage of all these benefits if it is easy and affordable to connect multiple devices into the network. This is exactly what we have addressed with the CP80 series.”

With a rugged metal chassis, CP80 switches are hardened to withstand the stresses of challenging industrial environments. The switches are sealed to IP52, and the metal chassis also acts as a heat sink, eliminating the need for cooling fans. High reliability is assured, with an MTBF of over 25 years. For use in humid environments or in the challenging oil, gas and petrochemical sectors, the CP80 is also available with the options of light duty or heavy duty conformal coating.

The CP80 runs as standard from 12V, 24V or 48V supplies, with the option of dual source to provide a redundant power input for increased reliability in critical applications.

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