The CAN in Automation (CiA) organisation has released the CiA 444 three-part CANopen profiles for container-handling machine add-on devices. The profiles specify the CANopen interfaces for crane spreaders (part 2) and for spreaders of straddle carriers (part 3). Part 1 specifies the general definitions.
Among others, the following companies have participated in the development of the profile specification: Bromma, NSL Engineering (RAM Spreaders), VDL Containersystemen, Gottwald, Stinis, IFM Electronic, Sontheim Industrie Elektronik, Liebherr, Noell and Kalmar.
In implementing the profile, the container-handling machine communicates with its spreader in a standardised way using pre-defined CANopen phrases, thereby exchanging configuration, control and diagnostics data. Add-on devices compliant to the profile are linkable quickly and with little configuration effort.
CANopen is a standardised application layer (EN 50325-4) for CAN (Controller Area Network), an internationally standardised serial bus system (ISO 11898-1/2). The CAN serial bus system was originally designed for use in passenger cars and is therefore reliable and suitable for outdoor applications. The CANopen application layer is the standardised product for embedded control systems. It is applied in many machine control systems, in medical electronics and in a broad range of off-highway vehicles.