Beckhoff is one of the biggest companies that delivers industrial products for automation. With a wide selection of technologies such as electric motors, electric drives, motion controllers and automation software, Beckhoff Automation has been known as a worldwide leader for high performance machine manufacturers.
EtherCAT is the standard fieldbus communication. It was developed by Beckhoff and has quickly become an industry standard, given its robustness and speed. Its speed can reach 1 GBaud, being significantly faster than many other industrial communication protocol used in the world. The EK1501-0100 is an EtherCAT Coupler, used to directly connect an existing EtherCATnetwork to a remote I/O station. Every Beckhoff I/O station is made of a coupler, a number of terminalas and a bus-end cap.
The feature that distinguishes the EK1501-0100 from the other EtherCATcouplers in the Beckhoff Automation offer is that it also works as a Media Converter, given that the communication interface placed on the left end of the device features two different technology. The upper port (the “IN-port”) is a multimode optic fibre socket and the lower port (the “OUT-port”) is a standard RJ45 port. So, other than connecting the I/O station to the network, this module also is useful to carry out the EtherCAT network “from optical fibre to copper”. The multimode optic fibre allows to cover very large distances, up to 2 km between couplers, while on the RJ45 side of the network, the maximum allowed distance between modules is 100 m. On the back of the device, a set of three hexadecimal switches is present. These switches are used to configure the unique ID (ranging from 1 to 65534) of the group of EtherCAT components.
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