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I wish I knew what DeviceNet is used for!

In process automation, we have tons of ways to integrate a field device in a control system. Most processes use analog, although digital protocols such as PROFIBUS and wireless have begun to catch on.

Often vendors will create protocols for a certain process or sensor. Welcome to DeviceNet, a low-level application-layer protocol for industrial use! You can squish various devices in it, from simple sensors to advanced gadgets like programmable logic controllers (PLC).

Courtesy of OMRON Industrial Automation

It uses the  Controller Area Network (CAN) communication standard, so all setup, access, and control happens through CAN hardware. Allen-Bradley-Rockwell Automation came up with this concept in the 1990s. The company chose CAN for its open tech,  robust physical layer, and cheap parts. This network also allows different topology, cables, and more.

Even though you can find field devices like the Micro Motion 2400s with DeviceNet, you’ll see it more often with simple sensors, actuators, and some converters to integrate analog.

This video will show you how to program DeviceNet:

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