I/O functionality for industrial Ethernet switches

Belden presents new media module from its Hirschmann™ product range



Belden has extended its Hirschmann™ product range with a digital I/O media module for the MICE family Fast and Gigabit switches. When version 7.0 of the "Layer 2 Professional” software is installed on the switches, this module enables signals to be sent and status messages to be analyzed with four digital inputs and outputs. An auxiliary output provides 24 VDC voltage with 3W power to control the connected components directly without an additional power source. Further features include IP20 protection class, high shock and vibration resistance and extensive immunity to electrostatic discharges and magnetic fields. The standard version is configured for a temperature range of 0° to +60° C. Two versions with an extended range of -40° to +70° C are also offered, which differ in that one of their PCBs have a conformal coating to protect them against condensation. The I/O Media Module can therefore also be used under extreme climactic ambient conditions.

The Media Module, which boasts a MTBF rating (mean time between failures) of 107.6 years, can be installed with plug and play. The Command Line Interface (CLI) can be used for configuration. The input/output and voltage supply status is displayed via LEDs on the front and – with an Internet browser – via the user interface of the MICE switches. Large title blocks enable module identification and clear connection assignment.


I/O functionality for industrial Ethernet switches (Photo: Belden, PR194)

The digital inputs comply with the EN 61131-2:2007/type 3 standard. The digital outputs are floating relay changeover contacts, which can each resist a current load of 1 A.
The inputs and outputs are connected via eight-pole or twelve-pole terminal strips on the module’s underside. There is also a two-pole terminal strip for the auxiliary output here.

The MICE family switches, which are specially designed for use in tough industrial environments, consist of a switch unit with integrated backplane, which can be fitted with up to seven media modules. The switches support both Fast and Gigabit Ethernet and various routing, redundancy and security methods. Fanless cooling and a redundant 24 VDC voltage supply contribute to high operational reliability. As the switches can be mounted on top-hat rails, they can also be used both centrally in the switch cabinet and decentralized in the distribution boxes.

With the new Hirschmann™ Media Module, Belden has now succeeded in equipping industrial Ethernet switches with I/O functionality. Product Manager Pascal Unterdorfer comments: “Signals can now be sent both locally and across large distances, and the status of the connected components can also be reliably monitored at the same time. This can include sensors and actuators, which, for example, can be used to control doors, conveyor belts or lighting elements.”

About Belden

Belden designs, manufactures and markets signal transmission solutions, including cables, connectors and I/O modules, wireless network systems as well as network devices and control, load sensing and load moment limitation systems designed for safety-critical applications ranging from industrial automation to data centers, broadcast studios and the aviation and aerospace industry. The company focuses on segments of the worldwide cable and automation markets that require both highly specialized and readily available products. With manufacturing facilities in North America, Europe and Asia, Belden has recorded a total revenue of USD 1.62 billion for the fiscal year 2010.

Together with its brands Hirschmann™ and Lumberg Automation™, Belden offers an extensive and highly specialized product portfolio covering the full range of data communications – from the information and control levels down to the field level. The company has more than 15 offices throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with manufacturing facilities in Czech Republic, Germany, the Netherlands, UK, Denmark, Italy and Hungary.

Contact Information

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Digital I/O Media Module for the Switches in the MICE Family

With the new digital Hirschmann™ I/O media module, the modular Industrial Ethernet switches in the MICE family can now offer both Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet speeds plus I/O functionality in a single device, a combination that is entirely new in the field of automation technology.