What is a Field bus?

Simply put, field bus refers to the network protocol typically used by industrial automation for device to device communication. Devices can include sensors, power meters, machines but typically are driven by the PLC (Programmable logic controllers) used by the machine maker. Field buses are usually designed with a specific purpose in mind and are very particular about the speed and determinism. The field bus you will use are usually very dependent on the PLC you use as well.

Common Field bus:

There are a variety of competing field buses in the market. They include:

  • CC-Link IE

  • Profinet/Profibus

  • CAN

  • EtherCAT

  • Modbus (RTU and TCP)

  • LonWorks

  • KNX

  • ControlLogix

  • FINS Ethernet and Serial

Connecting to a FIELD BUS

Typically, a fieldbus requires dedicated hardware to connect to the machine. The communication model is also typically a Master-Slave model. Depending on the device, various data can be collected from them. For example, a vendor defined power meter can provide data like Voltage, Current, Power Input, RMS etc while a PLC can provide the Setpoint data that are configured by the PLC programmer themselves.

At L33Tech, our partner for field bus connectivity is Anybus from HMS Technology. Here’s a video on how to select the correct configuration for your gateway.