IO-Link on the way to becoming an international IEC standard

IO-Link goes IEC

IO-Link has successfully crossed the first hurdle on the path to international standardization. With a positive vote on the New Work Item Proposal, the IO-Link standards development effort was admitted under IEC. The IO-Link Group then undertook to vigorously pursue the work needed to create the standard.


With the publication of the IO-Link Specification as IEC 61131-9 (Committee Draft) by the IEC in Geneva, an important step has been achieved towards an international standard.


During the course of this standards development activity, the current version of the specification was supplemented in an upwards compatible manner based on additional user requirements and adopted as Version V1.1. The main points in this regard are:


  • Optimization of performance for large data quantities
  • Parameter data management for simple device replacement without tool
  • Improved diagnostics, matched to the requirements of the automation industry


In addition, the IO-Link Group has expanded the test specification (for IO-Link device and IO-Link master), enhanced the IO-Link device description IODD with test systems based on it, and, last but not least, established accredited competence centers. This will ensure quality and interoperability over the long term.


Standard IO-Link, which is supported by many well-known automation technology providers, enables integrated communication all the way down to the sensor/actuator level. And, this can be done easily and inexpensively without complex cabling. The reason for this is that simple 3-wire cables are used for the IO-Link device connections, irrespective of the device type. Up to now, this was common only for devices with purely switching function.

By: Weber