More than 5 years ago, Cognex and B&R decided to work together to integrate vision in an automation system. Because of the high level of integration, previously unforeseen possibilities were opened up to machine manufacturers. Simple handling of the overall system revolutionized the market for machine manufacturers and initiated a new trend.
- SICK, Baumer, Datalogic and Mekra Lang equip vision systems with POWERLINK
- POWERLINK for quality assurance and traceability
The trend of integrating POWERLINK interfaces in vision systems continues. Vision sensors from SICK, Baumer and Datalogic are equipped with a POWERLINK interface. In addition, the SICK CDF600 system opens up a wide range of code reading for integration in POWERLINK networks. The scanner data comes together centrally at the component, making it easier to track products along the entire value added chain. Mekra Lang equips the IP cameras it develops with an integrated POWERLINK interface, which makes it possible – with no additional wiring – to install camera systems on a machine to do things like monitor otherwise unsupervised areas from a central location.
Inspired by digitalization and the innovative spirit of machine machine manufacturers, integrated vision technology is evolving rapidly. IT and automation have moved closer together. Highly synchronous real-time data from the sensors used to control the machine and also the image data used for quality assurance are thus transferred at the same time via a single cable. Through the integration of POWERLINK, unnecessary interfaces previously used for horizontal and vertical communication in production have been eliminated. This increased system performance significantly. As leaders in innovation, SICK, Baumer, Data logic and Mekra Lang identified this trend at an early stage.
Synchronous interaction between vision solutions and control technology have diversified the use of vision systems in machines. Using POWERLINK as the Ethernet-based communication protocol allowed the vision system to be triggered directly by the position value from a drive, for example. It is also possible for drives in a network to receive sensor data directly. The customer benefits from faster machine processes and minimized hardware costs.