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Motion Control meets ASi Safety - Safety Technology

Cost efficient wiring, freedom of topology, high flexibility – these are just a few of the advantages offered by ASi Safety at Work, the safety solution from AS-Interface. Now PacDrive 3 users can also benefit from this simple safety technology by using the new ASi Sercos Gateway BWU2984 from Bihl+Wiedemann. The Gateway integrates ASi Safety in a simple manner into the automation solution for motion control based machines from Schneider Electric that runs on the automation bus Sercos III.

PacDrive 3 – automation platform with Sercos III

The PacDrive 3 system from Schneider Electric is a scalable automation platform for motion control based machines using Sercos III. It allows a wide range of servo-controlled production and packaging machines as well as automated handling equipment to be controlled. PacDrive 3 is based on the Logic Motion technology which combines PLC, motion and robotics control functionality on one hardware platform. The system is suitable for up to 130 synchronized servo axes and for up to 30 robots. A Logic Motion Controller (LMC) processes I/Os and controls servo drives centrally using Sercos III. In order to implement safety applications, a Safe Logic Controller (SLC) is used. The SLC, a Sercos Slave, exchanges safe data with safe in- and outputs as well as safe servo drives using the Sercos AT channel. Safe I/Os and safe drives are available in IP20 and IP67. Programming and archiving of projects are carried out by the engineering tool SoMachine Motion with SoMove from Schneider Electric. As an open system, PacDrive 3 supports TCP/IP communication with higher level systems as well as incorporation of other fieldbuses and ASi components.

AS-Interface and Sercos

With the ASi-3 Sercos Gateway BWU2588 many users of Sercos have long been using ASi technology – such as for push-buttons or for the simple connection of sensors or actuators. By using ASi, they benefit – among other things – from the reduced installation effort, simple diagnostic capabilities and cable routing that is conform with the mechanical structure of the system. Until now it has not been possible to incorporate ASi Safety components such as E-STOP buttons or safety interlocks into the PacDrive 3 world. The reason: the ASi Sercos Gateway was not able to communicate safely with the Safe Logic Controller from Schneider Electric. To solve just this problem and so open the door to the world of ASi Safety for PacDrive 3 users, the ASi specialists at Bihl+Wiedemann have joined together with Schneider Electric to develop the ASi Sercos Gateway BWU2984 .

Advantages of ASi Safety in automation technology

When it comes to the topic of safety in automation technology, safe monitoring and control of drives as well as their safe shutdown are paramount. But also important is safety in the drive surroundings. Safety interlocks, E-STOP buttons, light curtains or step mats ensure that packaging machines or robots do not represent a hazard to personnel in the vicinity of the machine. With ASi Safety at Work, such components can be easily and inexpensively incorporated into safety applications as with no other wiring or bus system. The reasons: an unshielded, two-conductor cable, the greatest possible freedom of topology, and the typical ASi piercing technology allowing the safety modules to be positioned exactly where they are needed.

Integration of ASi Safety into PacDrive 3

The new ASi Sercos Gateway BWU2984 from Bihl+Wiedemann allows the safety technology of ASi Safety at Work to be used in PacDrive 3 applications alongside standard technology of AS-Interface. The Gateway includes two ASi Masters for two ASi networks and acts in the automation solution of Schneider Electric as a Sercos Slave. The device can safely exchange data over Sercos directly with the Safe Logic Controller. This makes the safety technology notably simpler. The Safety Monitor integrated in the Gateway monitors the safety technology in both ASi networks and passes the data safely on to the SLC. If, for example, an E-STOP button in one of the ASi networks is pushed, the ASi Sercos Gateway reports this to the SLC. The safety controller can then cause the servo drives to be directly shut down. Also integrated in the new Gateway is the Safe Link technology from Bihl+Wiedemann. This allows the safety technology of different applications or systems to be combined with each other.

(Click to enlarge)

Fig. 1: Integration of Standard ASi and ASi Safety components into PacDrive 3 with BWU2984

In the customer’s interest

With the integration of ASi Safety at Work into PacDrive 3 new possibilities are opened up to users with regard to the safety technology in their systems. The ASi Sercos Gateway BWU2984 from Bihl+Wiedemann now allows you to combine the simple safety technology of ASi Safety and the globally recognized automation solution for motion control based machines from Schneider Electric with each other in a most costeffective manner.

Fig.2 : ASi-3 Sercos Gateway BWU2984 from Bihl+Wiedemann for integrating ASi and ASi Safety into PacDrive 3 applications