Time Sensitive Networking and IEEE 802.1 – What You Need to Know

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Guest Blogger: Oliver Kleineberg, responsible for Advance Development in Belden’s Industrial IT platform, focuses on ICS networking R&D projects. An expert in ICS security, Oliver helps shape the Industrial Ethernet future, and is a significant contributor to the IEEE 802.1 Time Sensitive Networking (TSN) standard . This standard enables deterministic, time critical packet delivery using standard Ethernet.  With undergraduate and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Engineering, Oliver combines rigorous thinking with a can-do attitude to define the industrial networking products of the future.

When designing and maintaining industrial networks, you should understand where industrial Ethernet is going. Time sensitive networking represents the next step in the evolution of dependable, standardized industrial automation technology.

TSN will play an important role in communications infrastructure as greater numbers of devices are connected through the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Industry 4.0 revolution.

TSN, the next step in the industrial Ethernet evolution.

1. It Fulfills the Dream of Standardized, Real-Time Industrial Ethernet Networks

While you love Ethernet for its high bandwidth, interoperability and lower costs of maintenance and support, to date it has not been able to meet fieldbus levels of determinism in packet delivery and timing.

Yet, the ability to provide timing guarantees is a key requirement for many mission-critical applications that rely on network communication.

In the early 2000s our Hirschmann group, a longtime contributor to industrial Ethernet standards, noticed a new technology called AVB for Audio and Video Bridging.

AVB enables synchronized playback of audio/video data on different devices using standard IEEE 802 Ethernet. This ability to guarantee playback at a certain point in time at different locations in the network is a prime characteristic of a real-time Ethernet protocol.

Hirschmann teamed with another company to initiate a project within IEEE 802.1 to develop AVB into a standardized industrial protocol.

At first the IEEE AVB task group was intrigued, but wondered how large a market there could be. In 2011 an unlikely ally – the automotive industry – adopted Ethernet for car networks, instantly creating a huge market.

Deterministic Ethernet made automotive wiring harnesses simpler, lighter in weight and less expensive. It also made vehicle electronics more readily adaptable to driver assistance systems, improving car makers’ ability  to quickly adopt technology innovations. What industry doesn’t want benefits like that?

Automotive Ethernet market helps drive the adoption of TSN.

2.  Today’s TSN Will Work in the Future

Time sensitive networking is not a single technology, but an arrangement of many different technologies. While the first and one of the most important parts of TSN has been released, other specifications will follow in the next 3-4 years.

The good news is that you do not have to wait for all parts of the standard to be released. What is released can be used right away.

To read more about  TSN and IEEE 802.1, visit the full Belden blog article. 

About Belden

An early industrial Ethernet innovator, Belden knows industrial IT and delivers the next generation of industrial networking solutions. With its global brands, Belden helps companies minimize downtime and take advantage of real-time data access and control made possible by the IIoT.  Through a seamless, secure and scalable industrial Ethernet infrastructure, companies can revolutionize their operations and achieve improved efficiency, productivity and agility. Visit www.belden.com/products/industrialnetworking/index.cfm to learn more.

About Belden and the Schneider Electric Collaborative Automation Partner Program ( CAPP )

Schneider Electric CAPProgram brings best-in-class product and technology companies who help complete solutions by integrating their strategic partner products with the Schneider Electric architecture. Belden is a long-standing, highly regarded Gold partner member of CAPP.   Customers of all types across many industries have benefited from this collaborative combination of industry leading capabilities. You will find more about Schneider Electric Industry partner program  here.

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