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In the development of the new Ethernet rotary encoder "EAL580" from Baumer In addition to the extremely compact and economical structure, the focus was on the use of state-of-the-art communication technologies. In addition, the field-proven "Optoturn" technology for purely optical single and multi-turn position detection ensures maximum accuracy and maximum magnetic field resistance. The cornerstone of the economic design of the series is the particularly compact integration of the complete interface logic with single- and multi-turn scanning.

In this case, virtually identical electronics are used for the various Ethernet interfaces. This not only has the advantage that a high number of identical parts is used, but it also allows a test depth that would not be feasible with individual solutions. For the user, this leads to a consistent cost advantage combined with maximum process reliability.

Baumer40116In addition, the EAL580 family is very flexible when connected and operated. As a result, only fine differences between common interfaces can be precisely tailored. In addition, there is also generous freedom for application-specific adaptations to make use in machines and plants even more convenient. With this design, the encoders are well-equipped for the future, as market trends such as new connection technologies can easily be taken into account for years to come.

Maximum space for the designer

With the smallest installation depth in the class of 58 mm Ethernet encoders and its compact design, the EAL580 is particularly economical and offers maximum design freedom - especially where it is tight. The space-saving design is made possible by the unnecessary angle plug. Tight and fault-prone bending radii are a thing of the past, as the connection cabling remains very slim thanks to the uniquely radial connector outlet. The EAL580 is also the only compact 58 mm-encoder with continuous hollow shaft and either A- or B-side clamping ring. As a result, it can be optimally integrated into a powertrain and saves awkward additional designs.

The new series is suitable for use in a large number of applications in all areas of automation technology, such as handling and assembly systems or in wood, plastics and metal processing. Users in the field of printing or packaging machines also benefit from the extremely short construction if the processing area between two adjustable guide rails is to be as wide as possible, but the machine itself is to be as narrow as possible.

One interface after another

Baumer30116The first variant of the new series is the EAL580 with Profinet interface. All other Ethernet interfaces in a compact design are already being implemented. The Profinet version of the EAL580 combines many years of proven Profinet standards with the technological possibilities of the latest communication and encoder profiles and is characterized by a large selection of communication telegrams. This simplifies plant configuration and communication takes place precisely via the telegrams that are really needed. This not only saves time in the new plant development, but also in the redesign of machines.

The reliability of the machines and systems can be significantly increased by the Profinet variant supported Media Redundancy Protocol (MRP). If a connection line or a switch fails in a Profinet network with ring topology, the communication direction can be automatically rotated in the separated network part and thus be used further. As a result, the EAL580 can adjust to the new communication situation without any errors within a very short time and reduce the risk of a total failure of the machine or system.

Another advantage of the new series is the "Simple Device Replacement", which enables a time-saving replacement of the rotary encoder in case of service. For this purpose, the Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP) is used for neighborhood detection. This means that a defective device can be replaced by an identical device without any pre-parameterization. By information exchange among the neighbors in the network, the location of the encoder is clearly known. Based on this, the controller can then make all settings identical to its predecessor - without additional tools or device-specific expertise. The combination of the technologies used makes a decisive contribution to high machine and plant availability.

Optical scanning with high integration density

The optical scanning of the EAL580 series is based on an optimized monolithic "Opto ASIC" of the latest design with a high integration density. The high-precision design of the code disc ensures reliable measurement results without interpolation errors. For the end user, this means maximum process reliability and control quality as well as optimized MTTF values ​​thanks to a reduced number of components used. The combination with the latest interface technology is not only reserved for optical scanning, it is used in the entire range of absolute encoders of the Baumer Group. This includes the latest generation of magnetic encoders, which, despite their robust construction, are only slightly inferior to optical systems in terms of accuracy.

Baumer10116In particularly harsh environments, the globally proven "Heavy Duty "rotary encoder from Baumer Hübner an interface variety that is unique in this segment. The user benefits from this multiple times: In addition to cost advantages and maximum process reliability also results in a generous scalability - suitable for the particular application. For example, while heavy-duty rotary encoders are used in a particularly stressed part of an installation, an industrial encoder may be sufficient on an axis with less harsh environmental conditions. This leads to valuable time savings in the control programming, because despite the variety of devices used, the interface technology is identical for all devices.

Future-proof for industry 4.0 and IIoT

The information provided by sensors plays a key role in the 4.0 industry, and the challenge for sensor manufacturers is to make the variety of sensors and interfaces efficient in the 4.0 industry.

The absolute rotary encoders EAL580 with Profinet are the first encoders on the market to support the OPC UA communication standard. This platform-independent and scalable solution has an open architecture that is easily adaptable to future requirements, ensuring secure, reliable and vendor-neutral data exchange between different systems. By evaluating device and diagnostic data and linking them to other information, there is an almost unlimited variety of possible applications. This not only optimizes processes and improves the design of facilities, but also enables targeted planning of service assignments.

Thus, the new series of absolute encoders offers a compact and communicative solution in the name of the 4.0 industry and the industrial Internet of Things.

The author Markus Nagel is a product manager at Baumer IVO GmbH & Co. KG, Villingen-Schwenningen.
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