ABB Motion Contact Us  


Real-time Ethernet technology

Ethernet POWERLINK (EPL) is a real-time networking technology for high performance automation applications. It is a future proof communications platform which utilises all the strengths and benefits of standard Ethernet technologies but solves the issues of determinism. It integrates seamlessly with IT networks and utilises standard Ethernet hardware (MAC’s etc) and standard IP protocols such as TCP and UDP.

A simple solution to achieve determinism

Determinism is achieved by simply managing the network communications. Each controlled device transmits and receives based on a predetermined time schedule, coordinated by a single network manager node. In this way the data collisions and timing issues associated with standard Ethernet are prevented.

Ideal for motion control

Combining the strengths of Ethernet and real-time deterministic behaviour makes Powerlink an extremely powerful solution to motion control applications that required coordinated effort of multiple axes, I/O, sensors and other devices. It is also ideally suited to decentralized intelligent drives or centralized control architectures.

Key features of EPL:
  • A proven network technology
  • Built on standards such as IEEE 802.3
  • No custom ASICS for hardware required, software implementation only.
  • Multi-Vendor support with wide variety of products available
  • Cyclic Jitter <1µS for accurate control
  • Hi-bandwidth of 100Mbits
  • Standard CAT5e STP cabling
  • TCP/IP and UDP/IP support during asynchronous time slot
  • Inherent Peer to Peer communications capability
  • Network security by design, provided by EPL Gateway/router
  • Simple to understand
  • 240+ devices per sub-network
  • Well documented and proven CANopen application layer and device profiles
  • Plug & Play connectivity
  • Centralised and Decentralized control schemes with Ethernet physics
  • ‘Open’ technology, free of intellectual property rights
  • Managed by an open community of vendors, OEM’s and end users.
    www.ethernet –

Further information:

Ethernet POWERLINK basic cycle
Network Connectivity