Open-source SERCOS III master library available
January 15, 2010
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION
SERCOS International (SI) has announced that an open source software driver library for the SERCOS III real-time Ethernet communication system master implementation is now available via the sourceforge.net online portal. The software can be used by interested users (control manufacturers, tool suppliers) according to the LGPL license, without any license fees and without any usage limitations.
Two versions of the Open Source driver for SERCOS III boards are now available: a driver for plug-in cards with a dedicated CPU (active boards such as the SERCANS III board) and a driver for plug-in cards without a CPU (passive boards).
"SERCOS III is the first high performance real-time protocol to make driver software available as open source code. It is now much easier for manufacturers to develop a SERCOS III master and to benefit from future improvements and extensions of the software," says Peter Lutz, managing director of SI. "The library is a fully tested software without any functional limitations. All features of SERCOS III are supported, e.g., the real-time channel, the redundancy concept and hot-plugging."
By April 2010, the driver will be integrated into the mainline version of the LINUX open source operating system. For this, SI is cooperating with the Open Source Automation Development Lab, an international cooperative that promotes and coordinates the usage of open-source software for machine and plant control systems.
SERCOS (SErial Real-time COmmunication System) is one of the leading digital interfaces for communication between controls, drives and decentralized peripherals, with a 20-year history. SERCOS International has operated as a user’s organization since its establishment in 1990 for open, manufacturer-independent and freely available technology.