Munich, Germany - The current version 1.04.05 of the Powerlink stack from IXXAT provides the following features: Node monitoring on Controlled Nodes (CNs) via object 0x1016; Support of all priority levels on Managing Nodes (MNs) for the allocation of the asynchronous communication channel; Support of all mandatory and many optional objects according to the Powerlink specification DS 1.0.0; Modification of the Node ID at run-time via the object dictionary; Tool for the stack configuration with GUI for scaling and generation of the IXXAT Powerlink software (especially static parameters and the object dictionary); Switching between MN and CN functionality at run-time by changing the Node ID vendors; Bug fixes and adaptations to increase the compatibility with implementations of other vendors.
Many vendors do use the Powerlink stack already in their products, so the software can be considered as the Powerlink reference implementation. The usage of IXXAT's protocol stacks in multiple devices in the certification tests simplifies the future certification of a Powerlink device considerable. Furthermore the interoperability of the stack was approved on several Powerlink plug-fests and in many developed systems. Its Powerlink software is due to IXXAT the only one available on the market with an integrated configuration manager for the automatic control and update of the network configuration via the MN. An off-line configuration of the MN, with the aid of a separate configuration tool, enables the administration of all CN configuration files via the object dictionary.
To guarantee the maximum Powerlink performance, the stack is already prepared for the integration of various Ethernet controllers including hardware support. Especially for embedded systems, the integrated memory management for the administration of the configuration and application data within a non-volatile memory (e.g. Flash) is very important. The implementation of specification extensions, e.g. "High Availability" or "Message Extension" is already planned. These features will be offered as optional packages as soon as available.
The new version of the Powerlink stack is also available as IP core version, allowing the development of maximum performance Managing and Controlled Nodes based on FPGA technology. It will be ported products Industrial Ethernet Modul, Powerlink PCI Board PL-IB 300/PCI and PL/CANopen Gateway. The company has long-term experience in the area of Powerlink technology as well as the intensive collaboration in the technical working groups of the EPSG.