More networking, more safety, more freedom – these somewhat contradictory requirements do not end at the most sensitive part of the machine network: functionally safe communication. This is a task that is best handled jointly.
Previously, functionally safe communication via a fieldbus or Industrial Ethernet was limited to purely Master-Slave or Controller-Device architectures. However, there is currently no cross-manufacturer standard for safe transfers between machines and thus between the controllers used in the machines. Therefore, controllers from different manufacturers cannot currently communicate with each other without additional action being taken.
PI (PROFIBUS & PROFINET International) and the OPC Foundation have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to start a Joint Working Group to ensure that PROFIsafe will function between controllers from different manufacturers in the future.