The increasing interconnectedness of sensors, controllers, and actuators in modern manufacturing presents significant challenges for communications equipment and protocols. The EtherCAT® communication protocol was developed to address these issues. However, long distances between the locations of sensors, actuators, etc. and the EtherCAT Master Controller/PC increases wiring complexity with concomitant increases in cost, system noise, and reduced performance. There can also be a need for additional I/Os when the EtherCAT Master is not easily scalable.

Discover how MKS’ EtherCAT MicroNode™ Compact Networked I/O solves these complex distributed EtherCAT I/O issues. The MicroNode I/O is a highly flexible device that supports connection of multiple analog and digital I/O devices at their point-of-use, dramatically reducing cabling complexity and the number of I/O devices required in many smart manufacturing applications.