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Article | January 14, 2013
I/O technology enhances flexibility, performance
Beckhoff’s new EP1518 EtherCAT Box provides a greater variety of distributed I/O technology, integrating numerous functions such as 32 bit fast-pulse counters, digital inputs with sensor diagnostics and adjustable filter characteristics all into one compact I/O box.
With the EP1518, multi-function I/O technology has been expanded to include a flexible, IP 67-rated variant that is suitable for use outside of electrical cabinets and in harsh environments. The EP1518 enables shorter cycle times, faster network communication speeds via EtherCAT, increased precision in distributed logistics and more.
The EP1518 EtherCAT Box has eight 24VDC inputs as well as an EtherCAT input port and output port for linking to the process level. The device also counts fast pulses with a counting frequency of up to 1 kHz. Integrated data pre-processing enables the reliable counting of pulses, independent of the control cycle time.
All eight inputs of the EP1518 are equipped with an up/down counter and gate input that can be deactivated. Two of the eight inputs are available for standard 32 bit up/down counters, however all eight signal inputs on the EP1518 IP 67 box are transmitted as “normal” digital signals over the EtherCAT network. In addition, the EtherCAT Box is equipped with short-circuit detection via diagnostics of the sensor supply. The software-based adaptation of the inputs to the most diverse sensors/switches can be adjusted by filter characteristics between 10 μs and 100 ms.
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