The number of available systems from different member companies of PI (PROFIBUS & PROFINET International) that use the market leading PROFINET communication system is steadily increasing. In the beginning, production automation was the main focal point for use of PROFINET. The machines used there benefited from a modern and powerful communication system that, besides very high performance, also made possible entirely new solutions such as WLAN transmission. New developments by GE and Emerson are helping PROFINET gain access to other fields of application focusing on process automation.
The high-availability platform PACSystems with PROFINET Redundancy presented by GE at SPS/IPC/DRIVES 2013 enables PROFINET to also be used in critical applications from the transport, power generation, water and wastewater, and oil and gas industries. “In today’s connected world, companies must increasingly rely on automation architecture that is redundant, flexible, operates in remote configurations, and provides for information insight to boost reliability,” said Bernie Anger, General Manager for GE Intelligent Platforms Control & Communications Systems. “With the PACSystems PROFINET System Redundancy, we have dramatically simplified the complexity and reduced the cost involved with a redundant control solution. This helps companies achieve new levels of performance and confidence in the continuous operation of critical facilities.”
In addition, Emerson is collaborating with MYNAH Technologies, its strategic partner for Industrial Ethernet, to open up new market segments for PROFINET by integrating it into the DeltaV process automation system. Through its addition to the wide range of compatible buses for the system, PROFINET complements the PROFIBUS DP fieldbus as an option in motion control centers, variable-speed drives, and other applications in the process industry. “PROFINET in motor control centers (MCC) and variable-speed drives is an additional option for bus protocols in the process industry,” said Ernst Jäger, Marketing Manager for Emerson Process Management. “This addition enables users to make use of the full scope of system solutions. A major advantage of this technology compared to off-the-shelf network technologies is its orientation to economic operation which helps to lower operating costs.”
The activities of GE and Emerson underscore once again that PROFINET is suitable for use as a plant-wide system bus in all industry sectors and for all applications. Through worldwide implementation by leading manufacturers and system providers of production and process automation, these possibilities will now be further opened up. For users of the technology, this means they can access an extensive product range and thus increase their productivity through the use of PROFINET in their plants and machines.