Automation TechnologyAutomation Technology

PROFINET Field Device Development

PROFINET is the leading Industrial Ethernet standard and meets a wide range of requirements through its integrated Ethernet-based communication.

PROFINET Highlights

  • PROFINET can be implemented with any available standard Ethernet controller, since it is fully based on IEEE 802.xx Switched Ethernet technology with full-duplex and 100 Mbps.

  • Its modular design enables simple control tasks all the way to complex, time-critical applications (e.g. motion control) using a single cable.

  • The functional scope ranges from the non-synchronized Ethernet-based communication (PROFINET with real-time functionality), all the way to extremely high-speed I/O signal transmission and demanding synchronized communication for motion control applications: PROFINET with isochronous IRT communication.

  • Standard Ethernet technology guarantees flexible network topologies with line, ring and star topologies as well as wireless and fiber optic solutions.

  • The use of IT technologies has created new possibilities for automation: For example, access via standard browser to the web server of a field device or wireless communication in an industrial environment.

  • Clear display of the plant topology

  • Clearly structured diagnostics concept

  • Quicker system startup using Fast Startup

Advantages for Manufacturers

  • PROFINET can be implemented with currently available standard Ethernet controllers without any changes in the hardware.

  • Hardware support based on ERTEC is additionally available for synchronized communication.

  • Modular development kits adapted to match your development projects.

  • Development kits guarantee a quick introduction to development topics and offer a complete development environment.

  • ComDeC supports you at any stage of field device development.

  • Comprehensive training concept available.

Added value for field devices

PROFINET offers added value for manufacturers and end users thanks to the integration into field devices, because:

  • PROFINET guarantees a high standard of quality for industrial communication•Remote diagnostics via Web server is possible.

  • The replacement of a device takes place without additional engineering tools.

  • Automatically reacting redundancy solutions and intelligent diagnostics concepts reduce the downtimes of plants.

  • Diagnostic data are transferred acyclically to provide critical information about the status of network and devices; these data are indispensable for correct operation and preventive maintenance.

  • Simple integration of lower-level fieldbus systems protects prior investments of end users.

  • Automatic data updates on voltage recovery by employing the Universal Parameter Server automates the management of dynamic parameters.

  • The use of the PROFIenergy user profile can result in significant energy savings in an automation system.

  • PROFINET can also be operated with wireless communication in safety-related plant parts by using the PROFIsafe user profile.

  • The PROFIdrive user profile enables implementation of complex motion control applications thanks to isochronous Ethernet communication also based on PROFINET.

  • PROFINET guarantees interoperability through certified products in all automation systems.

Developer tools

During the development of your PROFINET field device, you have access to the following tools free of charge:

  • The Wireshark bus monitor. For a free download go to

  • The GSDML Viewer for viewing and verifying GSD files is available free of charge to PNO members in the Downloads area on the PNO GSD files can be created with any standard XML editor. The corresponding schemes are also available for download on the PNO website.

  • The load test generator (Security Level 1) is available free of charge to PNO members in the Downloads area of the PNO homepage