Wenglor 2013 EtherCAT Plug Celebration: International Network Workshop Inspires Product Developers

Sensor manufacturer wenglor sensoric from the southern German town of Tettnang hosted the “2013 Spring European EtherCAT Plug Celebration” on the 14th and 15th of May, 2013. The two-day workshop was once again promoted by the EtherCAT Technology Group user organization and hosted for the first time by wenglor as one of its members. The event focused on the testing of devices which are connected to each other via the EtherCAT communication protocol which is used by industry.

All of the engineers, product developers and suppliers who are enthusiastic about this technology and use it in their products were invited to the workshop. And thus 27 European manufacturers of so-called master and slave devices journeyed to Tettnang. The goal of the event was to conduct interoperability tests with various types of EtherCAT products and to exchange experience regarding their installation and maintenance.

The EtherCAT protocol is based on the common Ethernet protocol, which provides PCs with quick and simple access to the Internet. In a similar fashion to the way PCs are connected to the worldwide web, the EtherCAT protocol ensures communication between separate components included in industrial systems ranging from individual sensors right on up to master controllers.

As an international user organization, the EtherCAT Technology Group has been promoting workshops on a regular basis at member companies since its founding in 2003, in order to exchange experience and conduct practical, on-site tests. As a member of the organization, wenglor sensoric had the honor of hosting this year’s event. “We’re quite pleased that we were able to host the Plug Celebration at our company this year”, says organizer and wenglor product developer Manuel Gärtner. “The EtherCAT protocol is becoming more and more significant for us, which makes events of this sort an indispensable factor for exploring the technology.”

In the meantime, wenglor has two products which are based on the EtherCAT industry standard. The EtherCAT workshop was held at precisely the right time for assuring continuous self-improvement and the development of new innovations: “EtherCAT offers tremendous growth potential and is being integrated into our products for this reason as well”, explains Gärtner. “Lots of other sensors and systems, for instance a triangulation sensor with EtherCAT, will be introduced to the market this year.”


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