Motion Networks Move Ahead

November 5, 2007

3 Min Read
Motion Networks Move Ahead

Motion networking is a key technology for multi-axis machine and motion controllers. In the last 10 years, high-speed drive networks for high performance motion control have matured as vendors have developed motion and logic control solutions on single control platforms. The latest products are continuing this trend and offer connectivity for drives, I/O, PLCs and factory data acquisition and monitoring. Motion networking solutions are diverse, but the Ethernet Powerlink, SynqNet and Mechatrolink networks highlighted on this page all represent solutions that have been implemented in a large number of applications.

Control platforms, unified by use of integrated software development environments, are providing even more potent tools for sophisticated motion and logic control, along with better diagnostic and data collection tools. This trend will continue as manufacturers emphasize even more highly integrated control platforms and as processing power continues to increase for controllers, drives and HMIs.

OPEN PLATFORM CONTROLLER HANDLES COMPLEX TASKS

The Trajexia motion controller platform from Omron uses simple motion commands to program complex tasks with no compromise on accuracy and performance. The platform's use of open standards doesn't create restrictions on the brand of PLCs and other components and gives designers freedom in their choice of components.

By developing a controller capable of translating user-friendly commands into sophisticated motion profiles, Omron has put customers in complete control of the development process. At the heart of the new platform is Omron's new TJ multi-tasking motion coordinator. Powered by a 32-bit DSP, it is designed to meet the most demanding motion tasks such as interpolation and e-cam, e-gearbox and registration control. By controlling up to 16 axes over a MECHATROLINK-II motion bus with independent position, speed or torque control for every axis, it reduces wiring and offers full programming transparency down to actuator level.

SYNQNET® CONTROLLER FOR MACHINE AND MOTION CONTROL

The eZMP SynqNet® controller from Danaher Motion is a high-performance, stand-alone controller that integrates precision motion with a flexible, expandable and upgradeable industrial computer capable of autonomous machine control and user interface operation. The controller supports up to 64 axes of motion and up to 17,000 points of I/O control and has Ethernet, USB, video and PCI connectivity. The capability to become a SynqNet motion network master provides an effective interface to SynqNet amplifiers and I/O devices and as a controls platform for semiconductor, electronic assembly, machine tool, general robotics and specialty machine applications.

The eZMP can be programmed using Visual Basic, C/C++/C# or other third party software packages. It enables the Windows XPe operating system to be utilized as an open and scalable machine control platform. Support for other real-time operating systems is also available. Built-in connectivity includes Ethernet TCP/IP, USB 2.0, Device USB, VGA and serial port interfaces.

PARKER OFFERS ETHERNET POWERLINK MOTIONBUS SYSTEM

Motion control products from Parker Electromechanical Automation are utilizing ETHERNET Powerlink motionbus technology to increase system performance while decreasing overall system cost and installation time. Parker's ETHERNET Powerlink-enabled products include the ACR9030 and ACR9040 multi-axis EPL controllers and three power levels of the Aries EPL servo drives.

The new line-up provides a high-speed, digital motion-bus solution that connects the motion controllers to multiple drives and I/O points using standard Ethernet networking hardware. The systems combine the performance of centralized motion control with the lower costs associated with decentralized machine architectures.

To support the release, Parker's ACR-View Software Development Kit has been upgraded into an integrated programming environment used to configure and program the entire EPL system including controller, drives and I/O. ACR-View is a project-development suite that assists users in programming, debugging and commissioning their application. A single USB, Ethernet or serial connection to the controller is the only communications connection required.

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