November 2008
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EtherCAT Takes a Leading Role in Motion Control

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Control Solutions, Inc

To-date, EtherCAT Industrial Ethernet technology enjoys robust support from 40 different servo drive vendors

AUSTIN, TX, November 19, 2008 – EtherCAT, the next generation Industrial Ethernet fieldbus continues to make great strides in motion control. To date, 40 different vendors have readily available or publicly announced high-performance EtherCAT servo drives.

This support from drive vendors is clear evidence that EtherCAT has taken a leading role in motion control: no other Industrial Ethernet technology is represented by such a variety of products from so many drives vendors. This fact is underlined by the dynamic, new multi-vendor demo at the EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) booth that will debut at the 2008 SPS/IPC/Drives show in Nuremberg, Germany.

Superior performance paired with cost efficiency and unparalleled topology flexibility are the decisive criteria for these drive vendors and their customers to select EtherCAT. With distributed clock mechanisms, EtherCAT also supports precise drive synchronization without special hardware in master devices. Many motion control vendors have also decided to utilize EtherCAT as a system bus. Since EtherCAT was developed not just for motion, but with sensors and I/O in mind, it can replace several legacy fieldbus systems all at once.

CatNet Systems With support from 40 servo drive vendors from 13 countries, EtherCAT decisively leaves behind special motion control fieldbus systems that have been around for decades – EtherCAT is on its way to becoming the world’s leading motion control standard. Even more vendors are currently developing EtherCAT servo drives, but have yet to announce these new products publicly.

At the ETG’s cooperative booth at the SPS/IPC/Drives show in Nuremberg, Germany (Hall 6, Booth 208), there will be a multi-vendor demo with servo drives from several companies networked with one EtherCAT system. Altogether, the booth will feature more than 170 EtherCAT products from 59 vendors.

EtherCAT sets new standards for real-time performance and topology flexibility, while meeting or undercutting traditional fieldbus cost levels. An IEC and SEMI specification, EtherCAT features include high precision device synchronization, a cable redundancy option and a functional safety protocol (SIL3).

The EtherCAT Technology Group (ETG) is an organization in which key user companies from various industries and leading automation suppliers join forces to support, promote and advance EtherCAT technology. With over 850 members from 44 countries, the EtherCAT Technology Group has become the largest organization in the world that is exclusively focused on Industrial Ethernet technologies. Founded in November 2003, it is also currently the fastest growing fieldbus organization.  Website: www.ethercat.org

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