Starting in January of 2008, the accredited test laboratories of PI (PROFIBUS & PROFINET International) also began offering certification of associated EDD within the scope of the certification test of PA devices. For many years now PI has set up an especially effective quality management for open systems. The comprehensive certification of PROFIBUS, PROFINET and PROFIsafe devices is thus state-of-the-art. To also ensure trouble-free integration of the devices into an automation system, certification has now been expanded to cover EDDs.
The Electronic Device Description Language (EDDL) is a widely-used standard for device integration. The EDD is tested ?against? its own test specification based on the EDDL specification, which itself is based on IEC 61804. Syntax and usability tests are of paramount importance. They ensure compatibility with manufacturer-specific tools. These tests alone are not sufficient to ensure smooth operation of the devices, however. The device description must also be compatible with the respective device, i.e. it must correctly describe operations allowed by the device. A new challenge arises here, in contrast to the established tests. The test reference is no longer a single open specification, but rather the device itself. Accordingly, the test procedure must be generated individually for each EDD.
To minimize the testing expenditure, a high degree of automation is achieved when these device-specific EDD test cases were created. The ?PROFIBUS EDD Tester?, which was developed at the Institute for Information Technology at the Technical University of Munich, Germany (itm, Prof. Bender), fulfills this requirment. It is used in the accredited test laboratories for certification tests and can, as is usually the case with the certification of PROFIBUS and PROFINET devices, be used for in-house preliminary tests by the device manufacturer.