The Journal of Industry and Technology

Industrial Analytical Instrumentation

Euro Technology

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Industrial networking and computing products

First EtherNet/IP Linking Device from
HMS enables communication between
Rockwell Automation PLCs and serial devices

HMS Industrial Networks now releases the first product in a new family of EtherNet/IP Linking Devices. The new Serial EtherNet/IP Linking Device allows users to connect any serial device to a Rockwell ControlLogix® or CompactLogix® PLC. The main advantage of the new Linking Device is the unique integration to Rockwell´s Studio5000 Logix Designer. All configuration is made from inside Studio 5000.Serial EtherNet/IP Linking Devices from HMS Industrial Networks

The new serial EtherNet/IP Linking Device makes it possible to include any automation device with a serial RS-232/422/485 application interface in an EtherNet/IP-based network architecture. It supports all kinds of serial protocols including Modbus, DF1, produce/consume, ASCII and custom protocols.

Besides being a more cost-effective alternative to in-chassis communication modules, the distributed EtherNet/IP Linking Device also brings other advantages:

Improved system architecture
Contrary to an in-chassis module which is physically connected to the PLC, the Linking Device can be mounted close to the connected machine. This means that it is possible to establish a connection via a single Ethernet cable instead of multiple network specific cables. The Linking Devices support ODVA´s Device Level Ring (DLR) for ring topology.

Easier configuration

Users access serial protocol configuration through their existing Studio 5000 software. All configuration is made inside Studio 5000 where there is support for Process Variable Data Tags and manual and automatic generation of named and structured Studio 5000 Controller Tags without any required user logic.

High performance and stability
Since the Linking Devices are stand-alone (distributed), they do not affect PLC backplane performance (PLC execution time), even when large amount of data is transferred. The PLC simply scans the Linking Device as if it were any other I/O device on the network

Easier system integration
"After first communicating about the EtherNet/IP Linking Devices in 2015, we have seen a great interest from the market in these solutions," says Kevin Knake, Executive Vice President, HMS Inc. "The Serial EtherNet/IP Linking Device is the first step in our Linking Devices program and we will add versions for PROFIBUS and Modbus TCP later during 2016. With the Serial Linking Device, we can offer a cost-efficient solution with a very tight integration to Studio 5000 which will give many Rockwell users easy access to serial devices such as variable frequency drives, barcode scanners, process instrumentation and weight controllers."

All configuration is made from inside Rockwell Automation´s Studio5000 Logix Designer.

HMS Industrial Networks in profile
HMS Industrial Networks is the leading independent supplier of embedded network technology for automation devices. HMS develops and manufactures solutions for interfacing automation devices to industrial networks. Development and manufacturing takes place at the head office in Halmstad, Sweden. Local sales and support is provided by the HMS branch offices in Chicago, Beijing, Karlsruhe, Milan, Mulhouse and Tokyo. HMS employs over 240 people and reported sales of €42.5 million in 2011. HMS was formed in 1988 and is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Nordic Exchange in Stockholm in the category Small Cap, Information Technology with ISIN SE0002136242.

For further information, contact  Michela Nalin, e-mail: or view website: 

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