Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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Beckhoff launches EtherCAT G gigabit communication for data-intensive applications


December 3, 2018
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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December 3, 2018 – Beckhoff Automation has announced new EtherCAT G gigabit communication technology to deliver Gbit Ethernet speeds needed to support highly data-intensive applications, such as machine vision cameras, complex motion control systems and measurement equipment operating with high sampling rates. 

EtherCAT G is compatible with the globally established 100 Mbit/s EtherCAT standard, and a new branch controller model enables efficient operation of multiple network segments in parallel. EtherCAT G supports standard Ethernet transmission rates of 1 Gbit/s; its EtherCAT G10 counterpart, already introduced as a proof-of-concept technology study, is even faster with data rates of 10 Gbit/s.

Though it is not a substitute for standard EtherCAT, which remains more than sufficient for the majority of today’s applications, EtherCAT G shares the same characteristics, yet achieves even higher transmission speeds without changes to the protocol or the EtherCAT master software. EtherCAT G provides the same capabilities, including built-in diagnostics, high-precision synchronization and telegram processing on the fly. It also conforms to the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet standard.

The new EtherCAT G CU14xx branch controller series is designed specifically to interconnect EtherCAT and EtherCAT G segments and enable parallel operation. This setup significantly reduces signal propagation times and, thus, shortens communication and cycle times, because telegrams coming back from a given segment travel straight from the branch controller to the master at the higher transmission rate of 1 Gbit/s, independent of other network segments.


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