CC-Link IE TSN: the next-generation Ethernet-based network

27 November 2018

CC-Link Partner Association - Europe (CLPA)visit website


CC-Link IE TSN: the next-generation Ethernet-based network The CC-Link Partner Association has announced the completion of the specification for CC-Link IE TSN – a next-generation network based on the current CC-Link IE.

CC-Link IE TSN was developed to meet future market demands and has added Time Sensitive Networking (TSN) technology, which are additional standards related to IEEE Ethernet, to integrate Operational Technology (OT) and IT while further strengthening performance and functionality. Also, with the diversification of development methods, it has enabled flexible implementation for various types of equipment and also achieved mixed usage of information communications by utilising Internet Protocol (IP) and control communication technology. It is expected that these will improve efficiency and reduce time for the construction of smart factories utilising the IIoT. More details of the CC-Link IE TSN specification will be published on the CLPA Members Site.

Background of CC-Link IE TSN specification release

The CC-Link IE specification was released in 2007 as the first 1Gbps Ethernet-based open industrial network and has expanded its function and scope of application to motion and safety control after starting from general input/output control. Its features achieve a mixture of high-speed and large-capacity control communication (cyclic data) that combines with non-control communication (transient data). The two can coexist thanks to the 1Gbps bandwidth. Furthermore, it is easy to diagnose the cause of network errors. Since it is simple to build not only the system that controls and monitors a production site but also the system that collects and analyses information on the production site, it is expected to bring benefits to a range of different industries.

On the other hand, as IIoT systems have progressed to the practical stage in recent years, market demands for utilising a wide range of devices implementing general purpose Ethernet communication have increased. Moreover, requests for high function motion control equipment and protocol implementation for various types of equipment have increased. In order to meet these demands, CC-Link IE TSN has been developed as a network that significantly improves the performance and functions of the current CC-Link IE. Furthermore, it has increased openness through utilisation of TSN technology.

The benefits offered by CC-Link IE TSN include:

  1. Flexible IIoT system construction (adopts TSN Ethernet communication technology as a time sharing method; enables collection of information from end devices by IP communication while securing real-time control communication)
  2. Faster time to market and reduced downtime (easier network diagnosis by using general-purpose Ethernet diagnostic tools compliant with SNMP; easy to investigate the cause of problems thanks to time synchronisation of compatible devices)
  3. Further productivity improvement (with the improvement of communication performance, CC-Link IE TSN can offer a best-in-class motion control operation cycle time of better than 31.25us; segregation of high- and low-performance device communication, leading to optimised performance for all network stations and the system as a whole)
  4. Diversification of development methods (offers hardware (ASIC and other device based) and software (protocol stack) development methods; supports both 1Gbps and 100Mbps)

Development status of CC-Link IE TSN-compatible products

The detailed specification of CC-Link IE TSN will be released to CLPA partner companies through the website. Those partners who were involved in formulating specifications are considering product development and compatible products are expected to be released from 2019.

The CLPA partner companies that have considered development for CC-Link IE TSN compatible product as of November 2018 are: 3M Company; Advantech Co, Ltd; Analog Devices, Ltd; Anywire Corporation; AUTONICS; Balluff GmbH; Belden (Hirschmann Automation Control GmbH); Cisco Systems G.K.; GKD Corporation; GKD Nikki Denso Co, Ltd.; Cognex Corporation; CONTEC Co, Ltd; DAIHEN Corporation; eForce Co, Ltd; ELCO (TIANJIN) ELECTRONICS CO., LTD; Festo AG & Co. KG; Fortinet K.K.; Hilscher Gesellschaft für Systemautomation mbH; Hirata Corporation; HMS Industrial Networks AB; Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings; IAR Systems; IDEC Corporation; Interface Corporation; Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd.; Koganei Corporation; MESCO Engineering GmbH; Mitsubishi Electric Corporation ; Mitsubishi Electric Engineering Company, Limited; Mitsubishi Electric Mechatronics Software Corporation; Mitsubishi Electric Micro-Computer Application Software Co, Ltd; Mitsubishi Electric System & Service Co, Ltd ; Molex Incorporated; M-System Co, Ltd; Nachi-Fujikoshi Corp.; NEC Corporation; NSD Corporation; Optex Fa Co. Ltd.; Oriental Motor Co, Ltd; Panasonic Industrial Devices SUNX Co, Ltd; Phoenix Contact K.K.; Renesas Electronics Corporation; RKC Instrument INC.; Schneider Electric Japan Holdings Ltd.; SecurityMatter B.V.; SMC Corporation; STMicroelectronics K.K.; Tessera Technology Inc.; Texas Instruments Incorporated; Weidmüller; Yokogawa Electric Corporation; and Zuken Elmic, Inc.

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