Rockwell Automation Introduces Ethernet Interface Module for Its Allen Bradley MicroLogix™ and CompactLogix™ Controllers | Automation.com

Rockwell Automation Introduces Ethernet Interface Module for Its Allen Bradley MicroLogix™ and CompactLogix™ Controllers

April 182003
Series B module provides cost-effective Ethernet interface for distributed controllers

MILWAUKEE, April 17, 2003 — To provide users with a cost-effective way to network MicroLogix™ and CompactLogix™ controllers via Ethernet, Rockwell Automation has introduced an enhanced Ethernet Networking Interface (ENI) module. The 1761-NET-ENI Series B module adds several data-handling improvements, including more buffering capacity and additional message queuing, which increase communication speeds and provide higher throughput rates. Series B users can expect to shave 33 percent off their upload and download times when compared with transfers through the DF1 full-duplex protocol.

“By leveraging EtherNet/IP, an industrial Ethernet standard supported by hundreds of suppliers worldwide, the ENI has proven to be an extremely popular and cost-effective way to network our controllers,” said Mike Foley, business development manager,
Rockwell Automation.

The ENI allows any computer on the Ethernet network to access the controllers, which means an entire engineering staff can link to MicroLogix and CompactLogix controllers without running additional network drops. This allows users to send production data, alarm messages, or other status information to any computer, cellular phone, or pager capable of receiving email messages. For example, production personnel can program their mainframe computers to query controllers for production data each night and formulate daily production reports.

Because Ethernet is a widely used network option, the ENI module allows companies to leverage existing cable, hubs, switches, and routers already installed in facilities, as well as offer a network option that is familiar to IT personnel. This eliminates the time and expense of having to buy new networking equipment or learn a new networking scheme.

“This supports the industrial trend of leveraging a facility’s existing network infrastructure for Ethernet-based computer and control-system communications,” added Foley. “In addition to the hardware savings, connecting industrial equipment on Ethernet allows reuse of a facility’s IT expertise in setting up and troubleshooting networks, saving valuable labor costs.”

The new Series B interface supports a maximum of six connections (four connections maximum in either direction), allowing simultaneous communications with up to six other devices. For peer-to-peer communication, no more than one connection per destination node is established.

An additional Series B module (1761-NET-ENIW) offers a Web-enabled Ethernet interface for MicroLogix and CompactLogix controllers. This module presents additional remote Web capabilities by providing read/write access via the Internet. With an easy-to-use graphical interface and enhanced data configuration functionality, the ENIW enhancements can help improve productivity and remote access capabilities.

Rockwell Automation (NYSE: ROK) is a world-leading provider of industrial automation power, control and information solutions that help customers meet their manufacturing productivity objectives. The company brings together leading brands in industrial automation for Complete Automation solutions, including Allen-Bradley® controls and engineered services and Rockwell Software® factory management software, Dodge® mechanical power transmission products, and Reliance Electric® motors and drives. The company also is a leading provider of contact management technologies and applications that help companies more efficiently manage interaction with their own customers. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wis., USA, the company employs approximately 22,000 people serving customers in more than 80 countries.

For more information on the 1761-NET-ENI Series B Ethernet interface module, please contact the Rockwell Automation Response Center, 10701 Hampshire Avenue South, Bloomington, Minn., 55438, 800.223.5354, Ext. 1620.

Please visit www.rockwellautomation.com

Complete Automation, Dodge, Reliance Electric, Allen-Bradley, and Rockwell Software are registered trademarks of Rockwell Automation.
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