Industrial networks

Design for Industrial Networks

Design Services for Industrial Networks

Industrial networks transmit large amounts of data in real time — between devices placed far apart. They are used in power, industrial automation, and smart buildings. There are dozens of various industrial networks on the market, and we work with most of them.

Helping our clients implement their projects, we develop software and design hardware required for the successful deployment of industrial networks: fieldbus solutions, protection and control systems, tools for data acquisition and analysis, network controllers and sensors.

Industrial Communication Networks

In manufacturing, industrial networks enable data transfer between sensors, controllers and actuators; they also ensure communication with PLCs and the upper level of SCADA (Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition).

 

Our Design Solutions for Industrial Networks

  • Analysis and data acquisition systems (DAQ)

  • Automation and visualisation systems

  • Network controllers

  • I/O systems and PLCs

  • Industrial Internet/
    Industry 4.0 solutions

  • HMIs and IPCs

  • PC cards

  • Sensors

Industrial Networks

Our Tech Stack for Industrial Communication Networks

ODVA: EtherNet/IP, DeviceNet, ControlNet, CompoNet

OpENer (OpENer is an EtherNet/IP stack for I/O adapter devices) | EtherNet/IP Client (asynchronous, non-blocking, EtherNet/IP client implementation for Java) | EIPScanner | CIPster Ethernet/IP Stack in C++ | EEIP.NET (Ethernet/IP compatible library for .NET implementations)

Modbus RTU/ASCII/TCP/Plus

libmodbus, PyModbus, EasyModbusTCP.NET, eModbus, tokio-modbus, freemodbus

PI

PROFIBUS, PROFINET, PROFINET RT, PROFINET IRT, PROFINET via TSN

FieldComm Group

HART, HART-IP, WirelessHART

POWERLINK

openPOWERLINK_V2

CC-Link

CC-Link, CC-Link IE

SERCOS

SERCOS III, SERCOS

CANopen

CANopenNode EN 50325-4 (CiA301), canopen-stack, libcanopen, CANopen for Python

IO-Link

IO-Link, IO-Link Wireless

EtherCAT

SOEM (Open Source EtherCAT Master), SOES (Open Source EtherCAT Slave)

Others

openSAFETY; VARAN; OPC Foundation: OPC UA; MQTT

Power Systems Networks

Our solutions for power systems help customers plan, scale, and upgrade their electricity networks.

 

Our Design Solutions for Power Systems Networks

  • Overcurrent protection
  • Distance protection
  • Line differential protection
  • Compact remote terminal units
  • Transformer differential protection
  • Directional earth-fault relay
  • Central control unit
  • Grid calculation
  • Combined protection and control systems
  • OBS with combined protection and control
  • Bay control unit
  • Synchro-check
  • Automatic voltage regulator
  • Earth-fault and short-circuit indicator
  • Process bus
Power Systems Networks

Our Tech Stack for Power Systems Networks

Communications interfaces

IEC 60870-5-101, IEC 60870-5-102, IEC 60870-5-103, IEC 60870-5-104, IEC 61850, IEC 61850-8-1 (MMS, GOOSE), HSR, PRP, IEEE, C37.94, C37.118, G.703.1, X.21, E1/T1, ISDN PRI/BRI, HDLC, RS232, RS485, Ethernet, IEC 62056 (DLMS/COSEM), DLMS/COSEM over LoRaWAN, MBUS, ANSI C12.18, ANSI С12.19, ANSI C12.21, GSM/GPRS/LTE/5G, LoRaWAN, Power Line Communication: PLC/PLC G3/G3-PLC Hybrid, IEC 62061, IEC 60870-6 TASE.2, SNMP

IEC 62056 (DLMS/COSEM)

dlms-cosem (Python library for DLMS/COSEM), cosemlib (C++ client/server DLMS/COSEM)

IEC 60870-5-101
& IEC 60870-5-104

lib60870, go-iecp5, lib60870.NET v2

IEC 61850

libIEC61850 (open-source library for the IEC 61850 protocols), IEC61850bean

C37.118

Open-C37.118 (IEEE C37.118-2011 Synchrophasor Protocol Resources)

SNMP

net-snmp, #SNMP Library, gosnmp

PLC

Power line communication: PLC/PLC G3/G3-PLC Hybrid

C37.94

Read more

Home/Building Automation Networks

Smart homes and buildings reduce resource consumption and operating costs. When deploying building and home automation, the systems involved are integrated into a centralised, managed network. We help our customers to design such networks and develop hardware and software components for their stable and secure operation, including AI-powered solutions:

 

Here are the tasks that we can take on for such projects:

 

  • Building and home automation

  • Lighting and emergency lighting

  • Access control

  • Intrusion alarm systems

  • Door entry systems

  • Smart buildings solutions

Home Automation

Our Building Automation Networks Stack

KNX

knx (knx stack), KNX.net provides a KNX API for .NET, KNX-ULTIMATE (Node-Red), KNXmap

BACnet

BACnet Stack (BACnet protocol stack library provides a BACnet application layer, network layer and media access (MAC) layer communications services), .NET library for BACnet, BACpypes

DALI

Digital Addressable Lighting Interface: python-dali — lighting control interface

EnOcean

Python EnOcean, ioBroker.enocean, enocean-js, node-enocean

LonWorks (LON)

lon4linux, LON Stack EX, Dialog’s IzoT ShortStack SDK

M-Bus (Meter-Bus)

libmbus

Other

OpenThread, Z-Wave, ZigBee

Are you looking for a reliable partner to design an industrial network solution? Tell us about your project!

netX – Scalable Industry 4.0 Communication Platform by Hilscher

We use netX to build cutting-edge networks within the Industry 4.0 concept. This is a comprehensive software and hardware platform designed by our partner Hilscher. The netX chips for industrial networks are multiprotocol: they support all the leading Ethernet standards, so you can focus on deploying processes and applications, while netX ensures communication for flexible industrial networking.

Hilsher

The benefits of the Hilscher netX solutions:

Flexibility: their SoC family provide connectivity to all fieldbuses and real-time Ethernet networks.

Fast product launch thanks to a comprehensive software and hardware solution with an extensive ecosystem.

Ease of integration due to further technical support and development of necessary solutions.

Reliability of your investment: as a market leader, Hilscher guarantees long-term access to its products.

netX

An Overview of Available SoCs from Hilscher

 

NETX 90NETX 51NETX 52NETX 100NETX 500
Smallest Multiprotocol SoCNetwork controller for fieldbus and Real-Time Ethernet slaves with memory controllerNetwork controller for fieldbus and Real-Time Ethernet slavesNetwork controller for Real-Time Ethernet and fieldbus master and slavesNetwork controller for Real-Time Ethernet and fieldbus master and slaves with display controller
  • Smallest multiprotocol SoC with additional Cortex-M4 application processor

  • Built-in security features for secure field and cloud connectivity

  • Supports all Industrial Ethernet, Fieldbus and IIoT standards

  • Energy-efficient SoC with lowest power consumption

  • Flexible "high end" network controller equipped with a host interface or stand-alone solution for digital I/Os

  • Two communication channels for Real-Time Ethernet equipped with PHY or fieldbus

  • Extended communication functions support amongst others, PROFINET V2.3 - Dynamic Frame Packing and IO-Link V1.1

  • Second RISC CPU for time-critical I/O tasks

  • Fast SPI host interface with Read/Write functions

  • Flexible "high end" network controller equipped with a host interface or stand-alone solution for digital I/Os

  • Two communication channels for Real-Time Ethernet equipped with PHY or fieldbus

  • Extended communication functions support amongst others, PROFINET V2.3 - Dynamic Frame Packing and IO-Link V1.1

  • Flexible "high end" network controller or highly integrated single chip solution for application and communication

  • Three communication channels as Real-Time Ethernet or fieldbus interface individually configurable

  • 32-bit/200 MHz CPU ARM 926 with 200 MIPs computing power for Windows CE and Linux

  • Dual-port memory, AD converter on chip

  • Flexible "high end" network controller or highly integrated single chip solution for application and communication

  • Four communication channels as Real-Time Ethernet or fieldbus interface individually configurable

  • 32-bit/200 MHz CPU ARM 926 with 200 MIPs computing power for Windows CE and Linux

  • Dual-port memory, AD converter and graphic controller on chip

 

 

Other Hardware Platforms for Industrial Networks

EtherCAT

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM437x, AM57x, AMIC110, AMIC120, AM654x, AM64x.
Infineon Technologies: XMC4300, XMC4800.
Microchip Technology: LAN9254, LAN9253, LAN9252.
ASIX Electronics: AX58400, AX58200.
Beckhoff: ET1100.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.

IO-Link

STMicroelectronics: L6360, L6362A, L6364.
Renesas Electronics: CCE4502, CCE4503, CCE4510, ZIOL2201, ZIOL2211, ZIOL2401, ZIOL2411.
Maxim Integrated: MAX22514, MAX14829, MAX22520, MAX22515, MAX22513, MAX14828, MAX14819, MAX14827A, MAX14838, MAX14839, MAX14836, MAX14826, MAX14832, MAX14820, MAX14824, MAX14821.

Profinet

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM437x, AM57x, AMIC110, AMIC120.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.
Siemens: ERTEC 200, ERTEC 200P.

Profibus Slave

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM437x, AM57x, AMIC110, AMIC120.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.
Profichip: PA002005 | VPCLS2, PALF2009 | VPC3+S, PALF2012 | VPC3+S, PALF2030 | VPC3+CLF, PALF2080 | VPC3+CLF3.

EtherNet/IP

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM437x, AM57x, AMIC110, AMIC120.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.

HART

ON Semiconductor: A5191HRT, NCN5192, NCN5193.
Analog Devices: AD74115HN, AD5700, AD5700-1.

Profibus Master

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM57x.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.

PLC (Power line communication)

STMicroelectronics: ST8500, STCOM, ST7580.
Texas Instruments: AFE031.
Renesas Electronics: R9A06G061, R9A06G037.

HSR/PRP

Texas Instruments: AM335x, AM437x, AM57x, AMIC110, AMIC120.
FPGA: AMD (Xilinx), Intel (Altera), Lattice, GOWIN.
Microchip Technology: KSZ9477, LAN9371, LAN9372, LAN9373.
ARROW: Flexibilis XRS7003E, Flexibilis XRS7004E.

KNX

STMicroelectronics: STKNX.
ON Semiconductor: NCN5121, NCN5130, NCN5110, NCN5120, NCN5140S.

BACnet

Renesas Electronics: NEURON6050, FT6050.

LON

Renesas Electronics: ROUTER5000, NEURON6050, FT-ROUTER5000, FT6050.

Our Cooperation Models

Flexible approach to suit your current needs

Dedicated Team

We will form a team to fit your specific engineering task. You are free to manage it and provide additional resources.

Project-Based

We can join you at any stage or take on the entire project, including our management and risk control.

Fixed Price Model

This contract fixes the price so that it does not depend on resources used or time expended by our engineering team.

Time and Material

A T&M contract is the best option for your flexible set of tasks that are difficult or impossible to fix and assess in advance.

Do you need software development or hardware design for industrial networks?

Drop us a line about your project! We will contact you today or the next business day. All submitted information will be kept confidential.

FAQ

What are the most common protocols used in industrial networks, and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

 

1) EtherNet/IP is a widely used, open standard that supports real-time control and information exchange.

  • Advantages: high-speed, reliable, interoperable.
  • Disadvantages: may not be suitable for low-latency applications.

 

2) Modbus is a widely used, simple and robust protocol. 

  • Advantages: widely supported, low cost.
  • Disadvantages: limited functionality, may not be suitable for high-speed applications.

 

3) PROFINET is widely used in automation as a fast and reliable protocol.

  • Advantages: high-speed, real-time capabilities, standardized.
  • Disadvantages: it may be complex to implement; it may not be suitable for small systems.

 

4) CANbus is widely used in industrial and automotive applications.

  • Advantages: low cost, low latency, and highly reliable.
  • Disadvantages: limited data capacity, may not support high-speed communication.

 

5) EtherCAT is a real-time Ethernet-based industrial network protocol.

  • Advantages: high-speed, real-time, low latency, flexible topology.
  • Disadvantages: limited support compared to other industrial networks; it may be complex to implement.

 

6) SERCOS III is a real-time communication standard for industrial automation.

  • Advantages: high-speed, real-time, deterministic, highly synchronized.
  • Disadvantages: it may not be as widely supported as other industrial networks; it may have high implementation costs.

 

7) CANOpen is widely used as an open communication protocol for industrial automation.

  • Advantages: low cost, simple to implement, widely supported, flexible.
  • Disadvantages: limited data capacity, it may not support high-speed communication.
 

What are the challenges of integrating legacy systems into modern industrial networks?

 

  • Compatibility issues between old and new systems.
  • Difficulty in integrating diverse protocols and communication standards.
  • Lack of real-time capabilities in legacy systems.
  • Challenges in upgrading and maintaining old hardware and software.
  • Data compatibility and integration issues.
  • Cybersecurity risks associated with integrating outdated systems.
  • Limited technical expertise and support for legacy systems.
 

What are the latest trends and developments in industrial network technology?

 

  • Ethernet APL.
  • Increased use of wireless and cloud-based communication.
  • Development of real-time and deterministic industrial Ethernet protocols.
  • Greater emphasis on cybersecurity and data privacy.
  • Development of open-source and standardized industrial networks.
  • Increased use of edge computing and fog computing in industrial automation.
  • Adoption of Industry 4.0 and IoT technologies.
 

How can industrial networks be integrated with other enterprise systems, such as ERP and SCADA?

 

  • Use of standardized communication protocols such as OPC-UA.
  • Integration of MES (Manufacturing Execution System) and SCADA.
  • Use of middleware and gateway solutions for data transfer and communication.
  • Integration of cloud-based platforms and services.
  • Use of APIs and web services for data exchange between systems.
  • Adoption of open-source software and technologies.
  • Implementation of data management and data integration strategies.
 

How can industrial network security be improved to protect against advanced persistent threats and cyber-attacks?

 

  • Regular software updates and patches.
  • External network access restrictions.
  • Use of firewall and VPN solutions.
  • Local area network of process control systems.
  • A well-thought-out choice of wired solutions.
  • Implementation of strong authentication and access control measures.
  • Encryption of sensitive data and communications.
  • Regular monitoring and testing of the network for vulnerabilities.
  • Use of intrusion detection and prevention systems.
  • Adoption of security best practices.