Belden has developed a modular infrastructure box for the connection of production modules together with Weidmüller. This standardized interface, which was first introduced in a pilot production line of the Smart Factory technology initiative, is an essential prerequisite for the cross-location capture of manufacturing information in the Internet of Things, according to the requirements profile of Industrie 4.0.
The infrastructure box, which can be flexibly integrated and put into operation according to the plug-and-play principle, is compatible with all manufacturing modules within Smart Factory across manufacturers and offers maximum transparency and the greatest possible functional and data security as well as the highest level of protection for persons and systems. As a result, it enables fast data communication without increased workload and throughput times, via which, among other things, control commands and status information are transmitted and a reliable energy supply for efficient production processes with the smallest batch sizes.
The infrastructure box provides every production module with everything that is required on the infrastructure side. The requirements for corresponding solutions are fast data transmission, reliable power supply as well as flexible and secure integration.
These requirements are met by the Belden and Weidmüller solution, which is available in the highest degrees of protection from IP54 to IP69K as well as for use in explosion protection areas. It consists of the connected security module from the Belden brand Hirschmann, which ensures highly available data communication between the control, control and actuator / sensor technology as well as components for integrated energy measurement from Weidmüller.
With the infrastructure box, the partners have developed a solution that enables standardized cabling for the data communication and power supply of production modules while supporting both safety and security aspects. Depending on the requirements of efficiency, availability and safety, the infrastructure box can be used in ring, bus and star topologies as well as island operation. It also enables a centralized energy supply via decentralized sources. Its modular design also ensures maximum flexibility. For example, the number of inputs and outputs can be individually set or later retrofitted.