AS-International and the CC-Link Partner Association (CLPA) have announced the formation of a relationship in order to provide a complete open network hierarchy for a wide range of application types. AS-International is responsible for the promotion and development of the AS-Interface (AS-i) sensor level network that has become widely accepted globally. Its distinctive flat yellow cable has become the preferred way to connect simpler digital I/O devices such as sensors and actuators due to its simple "clip-on" connection method. AS-International estimates that AS-Interface currently has an installed base of over 25 million devices globally and support from 350 manufacturers. With a total of 1700 AS-i devices, it has become the de facto sensor level network.
The CLPA is responsible for the CC-Link IE open gigabit industrial Ethernet technology and the CC-Link open fieldbus. The CC-Link open network technologies hold a leading market share in Asia and have enjoyed good support in the rest of the world. The CLPA currently counts over 1900 partners in the association, making it one of the world's largest open automation network organisations. Over 1300 products are now available from over 270 manufacturers.
The decision to form a closer relationship came naturally. Says John Browett, General Manager of the CLPA: "AS-Interface and CC-Link are very complementary technologies. AS-Interface provides a well proven, effective solution at the bottom end of the network hierarchy and also has an excellent safety solution with AS-i Safety at Work. CC-Link neatly fits on top of this with a transparent architecture that provides seamless communication from devices on a machine all the way to enterprise level systems such as MES and ERP. Some of our key mutual partners such as Bihl+Wiedemann and Pepperl+Fuchs are already providing solutions to allow seamless interoperation between the two networks."
Rolf Becker, Managing Director of AS-International, continues: "We are looking forward to strengthening the relationship between our two organisations. We have already conducted some joint promotional activities in Europe such displays at the Hannover Fair and SPS/IPC/Drives Italia. We are also planning further activities in Asia, such as joint seminars for the automotive industry in China, as well as fairs in Japan like the SCF Fair. We also hope to see further support for the cooperation from our member companies via a continually expanding product selection for both network technologies."
Browett concludes: "We are delighted to be partnering with such a strong partner and believe that this relationship will provide a compelling network solution to end-users and OEMs across a wide variety of industries and applications. We look forward to demonstrating these benefits in 2013 and beyond."
To learn more about AS-i and CC-Link please visit www.the-non-stop-open-network.com.