If you require a PoE Ethernet switch for vehicle use then the Satyrn U080-TN-24 is the ideal switch for the job. It is VCA type approved, has a wide temperature range to cope with the worst the climate can deliver, and can run of the same power source as the vehicle it is fitted to. Also certified for shock and vibration and complete with a 5-year warranty, the Satyrn U080-TN-24 can deliver 120 Watts of PoE, with up to 30 Watts per port. It is the ideal fit and forget product for vehicle use.
Utilising Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) to send data and power to IP devices using one Ethernet cable is something the CCTV industry has been utilising to good effect for a good few years now. Being able to power an IP camera using one cable that would already have been required to transmit the data saves installation costs and eliminates the need for local power sources. Using a PoE splitter can expand on that capability.
Using our Satryn S011-TG PoE splitter the ability can be extended to power non-PoE IP devices, or any device that accepts either a 12 or 24VDC power input. The Satyrn S011-TG achieves this by accepting the combined data and power from a PoE switch and separate the power from the data, providing a power source and a data connection.
The advantages to this approach are that a local power supply does not need to be installed in the same location, and instead by only one Ethernet cable which can be up to 100 metres away from the PoE switch. The Satyrn S011-TG also takes its power from the PoE, making it ideal for powering a device that accepts 12/24VDC such as our DeviceMaster range of serial-to-Ethernet converters, or legacy non-PoE cameras.
One feature we have had customers request is the ability to take a signal from one serial port and split it into many serial ports, to allow serial port mirroring like a simple sort of “Y-cable”. Our classic serial products like the DeviceMaster and RocketPort have used the conventional RS-485 and RS-422 as point-to-point or multidrop, and RS-232 as exclusively point-to-point. The DeviceMaster UP with the Modbus/TCP firmware can however be configured as a “serial splitter” with the ability to send the serial data to up to six TCP connections. No Modbus specific features are used, in operation it acts like a DeviceMaster RTS but with the added ability to perform the serial port mirroring.
The above shows how the data from serial device can be mirrored to six individual host PCs. Communication can be via TCP-based serial application, or via virtual COM ports using our Secure Port Redirector software, available free on request.
If a completely hardware based solution is required we have two configurations that requires no host PCs or virtual COM ports.
By using a DM UP 4 port the data from port 4 in this example is replicated to ports 1-3. The data is sent from port 4 to ports 1-3 internal the DeviceMasters internal TCP connections, no network connection is required at all.
Finally we have an example of a distributed serial splitter which allows the serial port to be mirrored to any location on the network.
By connecting up to six DeviceMaster RTS units at each endpoint to the same network as the DM UP we can convert the socket back to serial, again in a purely hardware based design.
Please note: Using a DM UP as a serial splitter is best used for a serial port mirroring “monitoring only” fashion. Any attempt to write to the one serial port must be controlled by the user or applications to ensure only one socket is writing at any one time. There will be no control over which socket is writing at any one time which could lead to the data streams being improperly mixed.
Encrypted Connections across the LAN, WAN, or Internet
Comtrol DeviceMaster RTS, PRO, and Serial Hub now offer enhanced security featuring SSL and SSH encryption, enabling secure data communication across the network between host applications and DeviceMaster-connected serial devices.
For over a decade, DeviceMaster products have performed as proven, reliable solutions in the widest variety of connectivity applications including material handling, power utility, industrial automation, and traffic and transportation. The Windows NS-Link driver provides secure SSL data stream encryption and SSL/SSH configuration modes, DeviceMaster is able to effectively serve an even greater range of roles, reliably enabling serial to Ethernet communications while protecting sensitive data in government, medical, and financial applications.
DeviceMaster offers two distinct options to users with applications requiring stringent security measures. First, through the use of the Windows NS-Link driver from the Comtrol web site, SSL-secured serial data stream communications are provided by simply enabling a driver option. In addition, you can configure authorized client application access. As a second measure of security, the DeviceMaster unit itself can be locked down to be virtually impregnable by giving administrators full control over communication ports and encrypted or clear text communication modes.
- SSL serial data stream encryption configurable on each port
- Enhanced management with SSH and/or SSL configuration
- Strong 256-bit AES encryption
- Compatible with Comtrol PortVision DX management software
- Security features supported on all DeviceMaster RTS, PRO, and Serial Hub models
- Free Windows NS-Link driver
- Transparent encryption — no need to update existing applications or serial devices
- Perfect solution for medical, government, and financial applications with data privacy requirements
You may be hearing a lot of buzz about IO-Link lately, but do you know what it is, or how it works?
In this edition of Tech Tips, we answer the most common questions about IO-Link technology, what it does and who can benefit from it.
1. What is IO-Link?
IO-Link is a standardised, bi-directional communication protocol supported on sensors or actuators, which are connected through a master.
This gives the user/integrator more information about their devices and allows them to have remote access, which fits into the hot topic of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) or Industry 4.0.
IO-Link is a complimentary technology to an existing PLC, HMI or other controls architecture.
What IO-Link is not: IO-Link is not another fieldbus. Rather, it was developed to reduce dependability on fieldbus support by manufacturers an dusers alike. It is designed to be as simple and universal as possible, requiring only standard M12/M8/M5 cables (no special cabling or connectors). It is also not a proprietary communication protocol, but rather a recognised international standard (IEC 61131-9).
2. How is an IO-Link Sensor Different From a Standard IO Sensor?
Compared to a standard IO sensor, a sensor with IO-Link allows the user to see much more data about the sensor and even allows the ability to change the sensor’s settings without having to stop a manufacturing or production line to access the individual sensor. With an IO-Link sensor, you are also able to store parameters or settings inside of a master block, such as Comtrol offers, which can then be loaded to a brand new, factory-default device if necessary.
3. What Kind of Data Can You See with IO-Link?
With IO-Link, you can see the manufacturer information and part number, among other data, of your sensors that are connected to the master block. So, if a sensor needs replacement but the lettering of the manufacturer or part number has rubbed off or become illegible, you can quickly see the exact model that needs to be replaced with this information already built in with IO-Link. This is also called Service Date, information that is not relative to a device’s function but rather about the device itself.
You can also view sensor performance and diagnostic information remotely through an IO-Link sensor. This is called Process Data (information that the sensor is reading, like temperature or distance) or Event Data (notifications or flags indicating, for example, a dirty lens, an error, communication loss to a sensor, etc.)
4. What Kinds of Settings Can Be Changed with IO-Link?
A user can change the settings of an individual sensor without stopping the line to manually change the sensor settings one-by-one. With a web interface for instance, the user is provided access to these settings remotely. One of the most common uses of this capability is to change the read ranges of the sensors for product changeover.For example, if a manufacturer is producing “Product A” and “Product B” on the same line and needs to change sensor settings in-between the processes, this can be achieved by storing parameter sets in the PLC and then sending them out through the master block to sensors when a change is needed. The result? With IO-Link there is a potential for drastic reduction in downtime.
5. What is an IO-Link System Comprised Of?
An IO-Link system consists of IO-Link sensors or actuators and an IO-Link master block. The information from an IO-Link device is communicated through an industrial Ethernet protocol, most commonly EtherNet/IP, PROFINET/IO, or Modbus TCP. The user can then access the sensor-level information and change sensor data remotely via the embedded web interface, PLC, HMI or other controller.
6. Do I need a PLC to use IO-Link?
It depends on your industry and application. For example, Comtrol worked with one systems integrator in the mining industry that did not have a PLC present for a project. Instead, they used a connected PC to access sensor-level data from their presence detection IO-Link sensors. This allowed them to remotely view the results of the sensors checking for the presence of minerals.
7. What are the Key Benefits of IO-Link?
IO-Link has three primary benefits: remote accessibility, auto-device replacement, and diagnostic capability. All of these key features of IO-Link contribute to reducing costly downtime, generally at manufacturing or production plants, and also gives the user much more information about their sensors or actuators.
Remote Accessibility: Refers to the capability to access sensor-level information and make changes from anywhere, as long as the user is able to connect to the a master and/or a network.
Auto-Device Replacement: Refers to IO-Link’s data storage feature that allows the user to download an old sensor’s data into a new sensor for seamless device replacement. This means that the new sensor can be quickly installed with all the settings of its predecessor, which ensures the line can be up and running in a timely manner.
Diagnostic Capability: Refers to the ability to see errors and other important information without having to stop the entire line to investigate the problem. For example, in material handling applications, a problem with a sensor would traditionally mean shutting down the system so that a person can access it and manually troubleshoot and makes changes to the device. With the ability to see error codes or other events through the web interface, the user can quickly identify which sensor is malfunctioning and what the problem is. No line shutdown required.
8. What Industries Are Adopting IO-Link Technology?
Key industries that Comtrol are seeing use IO-Link include automotive, material handling, manufacturing, food & beverage, and many other industries, especially those that experience frequent changeover or typically long downtime.
Originally seen on SICK USA’s Blog: http://sickusablog.com/io-link-101-faq/
DTE – Data Terminal Equipment
DTE, short for Data Terminal Equipment is a device that controls data flowing to or from a computer.
The term is most often used in reference to serial communications defined by the RS-232C standard.
This standard defines the two ends of the communications channel as being a DTE, and a DCE device.
DCE – Data Circuit-Terminating Equipment
In practical terms, the DCE, or Data Circuit-Terminating Equipment, is usually a modem and the data terminal equipment is the computer itself, or more precisely, the computer’s UART chip.
Comtrol serial ports are Data Terminal Equipment devices except for products which have been specifically designed to be switchable from Data Terminal Equipment to Data Circuit-Terminating Equipment.
When connecting a Data Terminal Equipment device to another Data Terminal Equipment device it is necessary to use a Null Modem cable.
When connecting a Data Terminal Equipment device to a Data Circuit-Terminating Equipment device it is necessary to use a Straight Thru cable.
Here at Comtrol UK, we pride ourselves on being as helpful and knowledgeable as we possibly can be.
None more than in our Support department. With a combined knowledge of 26 years, we understand the products inside and out, and can offer help pre and post sale.
We received the following feedback from a customer just before Christmas:
Thank you for your help / advice with this matter. The “IP Mode” suggestion has done the trick as both units are operational now.
… And the icing on the cake is that I now have my application scanning & printing via the DM4 using COM17 & COM18 so a result all round.
Really like the kit you supply and it does “just what it says on the tin” which is always rewarding.
Finding you c/o Google was a win-win as far as I am concerned.
Thank you all for your contributions to helping me achieve my objectives; delivering scanning / printing to 9 x packing benches in a Warehouse without needing to install unnecessary tech for each bench i.e. a complete PC. Instead it is all delivered via 2 x Comtrol “Serial Hubs” which are connected via the LAN to a single Windows 7 VM which in turn is running a single VB6 App to service the delivery of the required labels, happy days.
We look forward to helping more and more customers in 2018 and beyond. If you would like to speak to either our technical or sales team, just call on 01869 352740
It’s always great to get feedback, particularly good 🙂 so we were delighted to hear from a recent attendee to our Network and Product Awareness training course.
Good morning Tim,
I just wanted to say thank you for Wednesday to you, Marc & John.
It was great to meet you all and I found it very useful and informative and has given me a good grounding going forward and of course I know if need be I can always call with any queries.
During our training course, we give you an introduction to networking, to help with some of the jargon that lives in this complex area.
From there we take a look at some products, and see what they can do when you enable a few of the features … finally we connect them all up and enable some of the security options, and you leave knowing how things can be configured.
Oh … and we throw in refreshments too – we can’t have you leaving parched now can we!
If you too would like to visit for one of our certificated training courses, give us a call on 01869 352740 and we’ll arrange it for you.
What else can your switch do for you?
With proper management and configuration it now becomes a management & security solution thus reducing costs especially in a public arena.
When a customer contacts us for a quotation, it is vitally important we get a complete picture of what they want to achieve – sometimes we could well steer them towards a product which is a better fit for their requirements.
Take for example a CCTV installation in a remote pole or cabinet.
With the remote health check feature our managed devices offer, the switch will send a regular ping to the end device, constantly checking it is responding.
If it fails to get a response, it will then reboot the device and alert you via email or SNMP trap – not only is this a real time first attempt at resolving the problem, it enables you to be pro-active on network maintenance.
This is just one of the many features you can use on the Satyrn Managed Switches
For more details, call us on 01869 352740, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
This announcement is being issued to serve as formal notification that Comtrol is initiating the End of Life (EoL) process for select models in the RocketPort UPCI, RocketPort UPCI SMPTE, RocketPort Plus, and RocketModem line of multiport serial products. Comtrol’s RocketPort INFINITY and RocketPort EXPRESS products will not be affected. Important dates and a full list of affected products along with recommend alternatives products can be found in the PDF link below. If you have any questions regarding last time buys for these products or recommended alternatives please contact us.