EPSG has published a special edition of Industrial Ethernet Facts that describes and compares The 5 Major Technologies used for real-time Industrial Ethernet, namely EtherCAT, Ethernet/IP, Powerlink, Profinet and Sercos III. This is available free of charge as a PDF download from the EPSG (Ethernet Powerlink Standardization Group) website.
Although the document is published by EPSG, the authors say they have tried to remain objective, assessing technical, economic and strategic criteria.
Within the 28-page document there are sections explaining how the five systems were selected for review, how each system addresses the need to operate in real time, and the user organisations and licensing regimes for each. Nine specific criteria are then considered within the context of investment viability:
Further sections are devoted to performance, implementation and safety functionality. Where appropriate the relevant factors are quantified (for example, cycle times in microseconds); elsewhere, a simple comparative scoring system is used (-- / - / 0 / + / ++), colour-coded for further clarity. Readers may be surprised at some of the results.
Follow the link to download a copy of Industrial Ethernet Facts - The 5 Major Technologies.