PROFIBUS Fun Facts

I love fun facts, especially those that disprove common misconceptions. Here are a few that should really screw with your head: the pterodactyl was not a dinosaur. In fact, dinosaurs didn’t fly or live in the water. Furthermore, the pterodactyl wasn’t even a species—Pterodactylus are technically a genus of extinct flying lizards.

Here’s another: Michael Jordan was never cut from his high school basketball team. It was a narrative that he created to motivate himself. The truth is that he didn’t qualify for the varsity team during his sophomore season. One more, my grand finale: there are multiple variations of PROFIBUS. You’re probably thinking, Get out of town, Jansen! Well, that would be a pretty strange thing to lie about, wouldn’t it?

PROFIBUS has advanced through a handful of revisions. In some cases, advances have led to a new type of PROFIBUS. In other cases, new revisions mean different versions of the same type of PROFIBUS. The variety of PROFIBUS solutions means a system can be adapted to fit the varying needs of different industries. Here are some of the most popular versions of PROFIBUS, still the preferred method of connecting to Siemens PLCs.

PROFIBUS Fieldbus Message Specification (FMS)

PROFIBUS FMS is the original, the real deal, like the first made trilogy of Star Wars before Disney ruined everything. Its original purpose was to be able to send complex messages between PLCs and PCs. PROFIBUS FMS had some real limitations. The biggest was that it lacked some needed flexibility. This protocol was not appropriate for less complex messages or communication on a wider, more complicated network. New types of PROFIBUS would satisfy those needs. PROFIBUS FMS is still in use today, though many users find newer solutions to be more appropriate.

PROFIBUS Decentralized Periphery (DP)

PROFIBUS DP is a lot like PROFIBUS FMS, except that it has much more universal applications, not to mention it is simpler and faster. In fact, it operates at 12 Mbit/s, which is 24 times the speed of DeviceNet! PROFIBUS DP gets this amazing speed by using a souped-up RS-485 media. Special connectors and components are necessary to achieve that kind of performance. PROFIBUS DP is used in the overwhelming majority of PROFIBUS application profiles in use today. PROFIBUS DP has, itself, three separate versions. Each version, from DP-V0 to DP-V1 and DP-V2, provides newer, more complex features.

PROFIBUS Process Automation (PA)

PROFIBUS PA standardizes the process of transmitting measured data. It does hold a very important and unique characteristic, though. PROFIBUS PA was designed specifically for use in hazardous environments. In most environments, PROFIBUS PA operates over RS-485 twisted pair media. This media, along with the PA application profile supports power over the bus. In explosive environments, though, that power can lead to sparks that induce explosions. To handle this, PROFIBUS PA can be used with Manchester Bus Powered technology (MBP). The MBP media was designed specifically to be used in PROFIBUS PA. It permits transmission of both data and power. The technology steps the power down, though. This smaller power reduces, or nearly eliminates, the possibility of explosion.

If you are looking for more information about PROFIBUS and how this protocol can have a positive effect on your factory floor, drop us a line or give us a buzz at 1-800-249-1612. Our application engineers are chock-full of fun facts about industrial automation, sports, dinosaurs—you name it!

Attn: Our office is closed Monday, 5/27/24 in observance of Memorial Day. Orders placed after 2 pm CST 5/24/24 will be processed 5/28/24.