What is IO-Link?More and more sensors and actuators today are already equipped with microprocessors which are used, for example, to control indication, for parameterization and the storage of configuration data. The obvious next step is therefore to overcome the bottleneck of the binary standard interface and make additional functions centrally accessible for the automation system.
IO-Link. Compatibility with existing technologies was the primary objective during development in order to guarantee investment protection.
IO-Link is based on a point-to-point connection between the sensor/actuator and an interface module. Up to now, the binary connection was only designed for transferring switching information, but IO-Link now allows two bytes to be transferred normally in a 2 ms cycle via a combined switching status and data channel. Other information can be exchanged in addition to the process values, such as parameters or diagnostics messages. This enables communication with sensors and actuators down to the “last meter” to be established for universal communication.
- Exhaustive parameterization options for just in time parameter changes to devices
- Efficient processes requiring different parameter sets for switching thresholds, gain, sensitivity and so forth due to differing production conditions
- Faster tool change operations
IO-Link Reduces Machine Costs
- Reduced inventory due to intelligent multi-purpose devices
- Only one I/O module and one inexpensive standard cable required
- Reduced I/O footprint possible
- Displays and switches no longer required on devices
- Reduced engineering and assembly costs and automatic documentation of device parameters during the engineering phase
Improved Machine Availability
- Comprehensive status information and diagnostic capabilities in the plant lead to drastically reduced machine downtime
- Enhanced information enables cost saving mechanisms such as predictive maintenance or asset management to be easily
- Device replacement without manual intervention to parameterize the new unit alleviates the need for qualified personnel
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