The FF Link allows the user to interface Foundation Fieldbus (FF) H1 devices to EtherNet/IP (Target or Originator) or Modbus TCP (Master or Slave).
The FF Link operates as an FF H1 master allowing EtherNet/IP devices (e.g. Rockwell Automation Logix platform) or Modbus devices to exchange process, alarming, and diagnostic data with H1 devices as well as provide parameterization and asset management of H1 devices using either the Slate software or Device Type Managers (DTMs).
The Primary Interface can be configured to be any one of the following four interface modes:
A Logix controller can own the FF Link over EtherNet/IP using up to four class 1 connections. This will allow the FF Link to exchange data with the Logix controller using the input and output assembly of the EtherNet/IP Class 1 connections. Data from H1 devices are mapped to the Logix controller over EtherNet/IP.
Modbus TCP Master
The data from H1 devices will be written to, or read from, the module’s internal Modbus Registers. The Modbus Auxiliary Map can then be used to configure the Modbus data exchange between multiple remote Modbus Slave devices and the module’s internal Modbus registers. The Modbus communication utilizes Modbus TCP.
Modbus TCP Slave
The data from H1 devices will be written to, or read from, the module’s internal Modbus Registers using the internal mapping functions. These Modbus registers can be accessed by a remote Modbus Master using Modbus TCP.
As an EtherNet/IP originator, the module can use one of two methods to read and write data to and from the EtherNet/IP network:
- EtherNet/IP Class 1 Connection
The FF Link can be configured to own EtherNet/IP IO by using the Slate software to configure the Class 1 connections. Each FF Link can own up to 10 EtherNet/IP devices. Data from the EtherNet/IP IO (via the input and output assemblies) can be exchanged with the H1 devices.
- EtherNet/IP Explicit Messaging
This allows the FF Link to exchange data with up to 10 EtherNet/IP devices using explicit messaging over EtherNet/IP. The module can use either Class 3, Unconnected Messaging (UCMM), or Logix Tag (Direct-To-Tag) to exchange data with the remote EtherNet/IP devices with configurable Class, Instance, Attribute values (when using UCMM or Class 3). Logix Tag messages are used to exchange data with a Logix controller by directly writing to or reading from Logix tags. The user can browse to the Logix controller (using the Slate Target Browser) as well as browse the Logix Controller Tag list (using the Slate Tag Browser) to select the desired destination Tag.
The FF Link has a built-in Isolated Power Conditioner which can supply up to 420mA. The power conditioner is protected against a configurable overcurrent limit. The module also has a configurable built-in fieldbus terminator.
The FF Link uses an internal mapping strategy allowing the user to map any FF H1 data to any supported interface and vice versa.
Up to 32 Foundation Fieldbus H1 devices are supported by the FF Link. The data is formatted into the engineering units for use in either a Logix platform or Modbus Master/Slave device by using the automatically generated mapping imports for Logix User Defined Data Types (UDTs) or padding for Modbus Registers. The latter ensures alignment with the 16-bit data structure.
The FF Link supports module redundancy when using EtherNet/IP Target mode. This allows two identically configured FF Link modules to operate in an “Active – Standby” strategy. Using the provided Logix Add-On-Instruction (AOI), the H1 data from the Active FF Link is marshalled to the Logix user tags. Should the Active FF Link fail for any reason (e.g. loss of power, network failure, bus failure), then the previously Standby FF Link will automatically become the new Active module.
The FF Link will allow the user to monitor and extract Foundation Fieldbus H1 device alarms from each H1 device on the connected H1 fieldbus from either a Logix controller or Modbus Master/Slave device.
A range of statistics and tools are available to provide a detailed diagnostic overview of each FF Link which simplifies commissioning. The Slate configuration utility allows the user to perform an H1 packet capture of the running fieldbus which can be used to analyse the bus behaviour and packets received. The FF Link also provides global and device specific statistics.
The FF Link module has two Ethernet ports allowing the user to configure either a Linear or Ring (Device Level Ring – DLR) Ethernet topology. The Ethernet ports can also be setup for port mirroring allowing for better fault analysis.
The FF Link can synchronize to an NTP Server allowing for automatic time synchronization. It also supports an onboard non-volatile event log for improved fault finding.