Having completed the integration of fieldbuses for factory automation into Profinet, the PI (Profibus and Profinet International) working group 'Fieldbus Integration' started work on integrating the Hart and FF communication systems for process automation. The draft specification for the integration of Hart into Profinet has just been released, appropriately in time for INTERKAMA 2007. The close collaboration with the Hart Communication Foundation (HCF) was made evident by the active role a representative of HCF Europe played in the working group.
The integration of Hart into Profinet is a compatible development of the Hart on Profibus profile. The communication services already defined for Profibus were retained. Therefore, the primary task lay in adapting these communication services to Profinet communication objects.
The integration of Hart into Profinet supports Hart Revision 6. As with Profibus, all Hart commands can be transferred over the Profinet system with total transparency. This means that existing Hart engineering systems can now offer under Profinet all the performance features, too, which have already been established under Profibus. Accordingly, Hart devices can also be parameterised over Profinet.
With the successful conclusion of the project, the Profinet concept has shown that it is a compatible platform for the integration of subordinate communication systems in process automation. This is the first significant step on the way to proving the feasibility of Profinet in process automation.
The draft specification for the integration of Hart into Profinet is available to purchase from Profibus International or for members of Profibus International to download free of charge from Profibus website.