Converging Office and industrial Networks

Effective communication is increasingly becoming an essential part of everyday personal life, as well as a decisive competitive factor in business life. Communication technologies geared to increasing efficiency in all business processes are particularly evident in the constantly growing number of PCs in companies. Genuine efficiency was only attained, however, with the advent of LAN technology (LAN = Local Area Network).

A LAN not only includes servers, PCs, protocols and programs, but also the corresponding cabling, which more or less represents the transport paths for the data packets to be sent.

HISTORY OF STRUCTURED BUILDING CABLING

While cabling was developed and set up on an application-by-application basis during the 1970’s and 1980’s, the idea of universally usable cabling in the LAN area took hold at the beginning of the 1990’s. This generic cabling, not tied to any specific application, was meant to offer a cost-effective infrastructure for all existing information services and protocols within buildings or building complexes.

In 1995 the first internationally coordinated standard on structured building cabling (ISO/IEC 11801) appeared; essential sections of this standard were adopted by the European EN 50173. In the same year, the German standard titled “Generic Cabling Systems” (DIN EN 50173) was published.

The current standards for structured building cabling are:

  • ISO/IEC 11801:2002 (international standard)
  • EN 50173-1:2002 (european standard)
  • TIA/EIA 568:2002 (american standard)

CABLING STRUCTURE IN ACCORDANCE WITH ISO/IEC 11801, EN 50173

There are three distinct areas:

  • Primary area (also called the campus area)
  • Secondary area (also called riser area or, more frequently, backbone)
  • Tertiary area (also called the horizontal area)

Today’s structured building cabling systems essentially use only two cable types: fiber optic cable for the campus and backbone areas and twisted-pair copper cable for the horizontal area.

In the horizontal area, a maximum length of 100 m is assumed. Cable and connector are organized into categories, which simultaneously define the components’ performance.

The categories are defined as follows:

  • Category 5 for bandwidths up to 100 MHz
  • Category 6 for bandwidths up to 250 MHz and
  • Category 7 for bandwidths up to 600 MHz.

While the SC and Duplex SC connectors are predominant for fiber optic cabling, the RJ 45 connector is the standard for copper cabling. This connector is used as a socket in distribution panels and junction boxes and, in plug form, it is employed on patch and connection cords.

Defined outlets are needed in order to reliably connect the large number of already existing office networks to industry’s machine networks. Therefore, user demands for defined standards have become increasingly vocal in recent times.

CONNECTING THE OFFICE WORLD WITH INDUSTRIAL ­ENVIRONMENTS

There is a central theme in the international standardization of generic cabling: How does the IT network enter into industrial applications? The TO (Telecommunication Outlet = junction box) already known from the office, is of essential significance. The so-called InO (Industrial Outlet) represents the interface between building cabling and plant cabling.

The locations for the Industrial Outlets are already defined during network planning for the factory building. The building network cables terminate at outlets positioned on columns or at manufacturing cells. These industrial outlets represent the point where plant or facility specific cabling commences. In order to ensure smooth interaction from the top (office) to the bottom (machine), the HARTING Technology Group developed a product family that is optimally adapted to the machine network and still compatible with common office standards.

The HARTING RJ Industrial® connector simultaneously conforms to the specifications of the Profibus Nutzerorganisation (PNO – Profibus User Organization) and is RJ 45 compatible, which means that it supports the global office standard according to ISO IEC 11801. The PNO has defined this interface for PROFInet, the Ethernet-based automation network, which optimally corresponds to industrial cabling requirements.

The InO is the data handover point between the factory building and the office network, which is usually a part of the company-wide IT infrastructure.

Organization of the cabling levels in a building complex

INDUSTRIAL OUTLET FROM HARTING

INDUSTRIAL OUTLET FROM HARTING

In the interest of providing users with technical continuity, the InO from HARTING has adopted proven LSA-PLUS® termination technology for the building network cable. Consequently, users encounter something that they are already familiar with and can therefore install. The development of this InO was driven forward in close cooperation with the experts for building and in-house cabling in the office area at KRONE. KRONE’s cabling solutions and components for equipping buildings (office cabling) are used in building cabling around the world.

HARTING presented a plastic housing version of the Industrial Outlet, which combined the expert knowledge of the two companies, as an absolute innovation for the first time at the SPS/IPC/Drives 2003, in addition to the metal InO, which is already very successful in the market.

Merging a wealth of functions and practical qualities with award deserving design, the InO Push Pull is setting new standards.

PROPERTIES OF THE INDUSTRIAL PUSH PULL OUTLET

Connecting the cable in the InO was simplified, as the prescribed terminal lengths are clearly marked inside the housing. This allows the installing technician to determine the cable length for the specific case even faster, spelling a considerable reductions in installation times as a result.

The RJ 45 jack connection in the housing was optimized by using KM8 jacks from KRONE, which can be harnessed without tools. The office-proven RJ 45 terminal blocks KM8 with LSA-PLUS® termination technology allow cabling with AWG 22-24 industrial cables. These terminal blocks have 360° screening and comply with IEC 11801, not only in their link performance, but also in the strict component requirements in accordance with Cat. 6. This guarantees reliable transmission of data signals according to the standard, in addition to further reducing the connection time as no tools are required for the preparation.

The integrated cable manager ensures that the cable is guided correctly inside the housing. The geometry of this innovation enables the creation of a defined bending radius, allowing smooth installation of Cat. 6 performance. When the InO is connected and the cover has been closed, it is always ensured that the cable is guided inside in just the right way, as HF lines work like a water hose:

Nothing gets through if the line is kinked.

This resulted in an extreme reduction in the housing’s overall dimensions, as it was possible to minimize the standard bending radius since the cable is precisely guided into the cable manager. At the same time, this cable guide facilitates the installing technician’s work, because he/she can be sure that the cable is fed in the housing correctly, thereby patting the error ratio and the error propability to zero.

Another advantage of this cable manager is the cable feed into the InO from two sides. By simply shifting the cable manager, it is possible to rotate the lower housing by 180° and thereby connect the cable coming in from the top or from the bottom. This allows the widest possible application range for the InO.

As an inserted connector cannot always be assumed, the InO Push Pull is fitted with automatic flaps. This guarantees permanent

IP 65/67 degree of protection – whether plugged in or not. The subsequent insertion of cover flaps can be dispensed with.

In order to realize unique port identification in the network, even under unfavorable environmental conditions, the InO from ­HARTING has an integrated transparent protective glass, which allows the box to be labeled, even in an IP 65/67 environment. This ensures that even after many years of use in a hostile environment, the box identification does not yellow and become illegible.

PROPERTIES OF THE INDUSTRIAL PUSH PULL OUTLET

THE RJ 45-BASED CONNECTION

The HARTING RJ Industrial Push Pull is used as an interface in machine cabling. This connector beats the space requirements of all other IP 65 and IP 67 RJ 45 connectors by 50 %. Given user demands for miniaturization, HARTING also resolutely follows this path in international standardization. The HARTING RJ Industrial Push Pull connector is currently seen by the Industrial Premise Task Group (IPTG) – a work group within the ISO IEC for revising the 11801 cabling standard – as the possible mating face for connecting industrial cabling to the office network.

These developments outlined demonstrate, close cooperation among experts from office and industrial cabling can produce the greatest possible advantages for end users. Thanks to this approach HARTING is able to offer reliable solutions today that fully meet the requirements of crucial applications in building cabling in industrial surroundings.

KRONE

KRONE has been involved in the development of structured cabling systems right from the initial stages, and is a member of international and many national standards committees. The company ranks as a leading provider of passive infrastructure solutions. KRONE cabling solutions and components for buildings systems (office cabling) are marketed globally under the PremisNET® name.

Cabling components from KRONE show up in all telecommunications companies, providers and in cabling in large office buildings, airports and financial service providers.

KRONE has responded to constantly growing market requirements by increasing its capacity for innovation. Consequently, KRONE was the first company to put a 100% component-compliant Category 6 system based on the KM8 on the markets. The company is dynamically advancing the development of de-embedded test methods and is leading in the development of copper cabling systems capable of 10 Gigabit Ethernet.