Phoenix Contact joins growing CC-Link IE TSN support

Mitsubishi Electric is releasing its first 102 factory automation products compatible with the CC-Link IE TSN next-generation industrial open network. Increasingly, many third-party makers are also joining them. Phoenix Contact has just announced a range of compatible network switches offering CC-Link IE TSN support.

As manufacturers shift to smart IIoT factories for improved production, demand is rising for increasingly high-speed and high-accuracy industrial networks. This also creates a need for real-time data collection on shop floors; primary processing of machine data by edge computing, and seamless transfer of data to IT systems.

Supporting this trend, Mitsubishi Electric will introduce a variety of factory automation products compatible with CC-Link IE TSN. The products enable high-speed and high-accuracy production machinery for improved productivity, and a single network to integrate all factory devices on one Ethernet cable, and manage all data from the shop floor, thereby enhancing e-F@ctory for increased manufacturing competitiveness. Products will include programmable controllers, servo amplifiers, robots, GOT (HMIs), inverters and CNCs

 CC-Link IE TSN support

Addressing the communications and connectivity needs of Industry 4.0, such as openness and inter-connectivity is also important for Phoenix Contact. As businesses are embarking on their journeys to build the factory of the future. Phoenix Contact recognised the need to help its customers with reliable and future-proof systems. Ensuring CC-Link Partner Association (CLPA) conformance for their CC-Link IE compatible network devices and understanding the potential of innovations, such as Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN) technology, are two key aspects of Phoenix Contact’s strategy.

Jan Aulenberg, Product Manager – Industrial Network Technology at Phoenix Contact, explains. “The advantage of CC-Link IE is that it is based on the Industrial Ethernet technology standard, accepted worldwide. In addition, the CLPA also offers detailed information about CC-Link IE networks and certified products on its website.”

Moreover, Phoenix Contact not only develops CC-Link IE compatible devices, but also submits them for CLPA conformance testing. Certification ensures that our products fulfil all the requirements of any CC-Link IE system, says Aulenberg.

Phoenix Contact Network switches

Conformance tested network switches are important for ensuring connectivity of automation components. Of interest is the recently certified FL SWITCH 2000 family of managed switches. These are intelligent systems designed to maximise flexibility, robustness and stability of industrial automation networks. Jan Aulenberg adds: “Firstly, we certified three FL SWITCH 2000 switches with up to 8 ports according to CLPA specifications. Now, we are planning for our switches with up to 16 ports and fibre ports to undergo CLPA conformance testing soon.”

When planning future developments and innovative technologies to embed in its products, Phoenix Contact strongly believes that TSN will be one of them, hence their CC-Link IE TSN support. Aulenberg says the development of innovative digital communicative technologies like TSN, 5G and 2-wire Ethernet are essential. They will have a big impact on the automation systems of the future, by outperforming today’s systems.

TSN brings real-time capabilities into standard Ethernet. The main advantages of TSN are time synchronisation opportunities and the prioritisation of time-critical data traffic. These two elements are the foundation of CLPA’s latest open Industrial Ethernet technology, CC-Link IE TSN. This implements the IEEE 802.1 TSN standards on precision clock synchronisation and scheduled traffic to deliver tools for Smart Manufacturing.

TSN is also an important future technology for Phoenix Contact. They are members of all relevant working groups and standardisation committees to develop TSN solutions for the benefit of future customers. Click here to watch this video on YouTube