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News

Redundancy in Industrial Ethernet Applications

Ethernet Direct : 29 June, 2009  (Special Report)
Ethernet Direct explains the background behind ring redundancy to demystify the technology behind achieving reliable and secure networking for critical applications
Ethernet Direct Corporation, a professional and primary provider of Industrial Networking and communication solutions shares some insights about the importance of redundancy in Industrial Ethernet. In order to provide the right Industrial Ethernet Solutions to the industry, Ethernet Direct offers a broad range of Industrial Managed Ethernet products designed specifically with multi-levels of redundancy to ensure a reliable and secured industrial network.

Power redundancy means the ability to connect to an alternative power supply in case a power failure occurs. A relay output will trigger an alarm when pre-defined events happen. Ring redundancy provides a back-up path in an event that any part of a network is disrupted and the redundant ring can deactivate one of the links in the ring to data traffic while simultaneously monitoring that the link is functioning. Network node redundancy adds reliability by allowing a device to be connected to the Ethernet network by having two independent connection points, an operating connection and back-up connection. Entire system redundancy is reliable only when multi levels of redundancies can be achieved and minimizes data loss by providing fast recovery time once unexpected network disruption occurs.

Ethernet Direct offers several ring technologies in addition to standard STP & RSTP. The X-ring is an advanced industrial redundant technology introduced by Ethernet Direct with recovery time to less than 10ms. Deploying Dual Homing and Couple Ring ensure double protection of network paths to the core switches and protect the X-Ring with each other). Ring Coupling allows network engineers to set up a versatile and fault-tolerant network by separating distributed devices into different and smaller redundant rings. While Dual Homing provides an advanced redundancy network solution by connecting switches running in different redundant protocols such as IEEE 802.1w RSTP & X-Ring to extend the network redundant coverage.

Although Ethernet Direct provides the Dual Homing technology for the industrial customers who may need to connect their switches from field environment to the centralized backbone, some users may not deploy Cisco or HP switches. Considering the needs, Ethernet Direct provides new redundant technologies called Dual Ring & Central Ring. Dual Ring allows the connection up to two ring groups to the central backbone and the configuration will only exist in those switches with minimum 8 ports availability and in Central Ring, the configuration will only exist in a 16-port gigabit Ethernet switch, and it allows the connection up to five ring groups.

Another ring technology introduced by Ethernet Direct is Double Ring which can be implemented when an environment requires redundant solutions for all the connected devices and not only limited to the network switches. The solution not only takes care of the Ethernet switches but also helps to provide the redundancy for the connections between the Edge devices and the switches. In this kind of implementation, the Edge devices are required to have at least two network interfaces for the redundant connections needed, and those devices without the multiple network interfaces may not be applicable to this technology.

To further fulfill more advanced redundancy scheme, Ethernet Direct launched the newest redundant technology named "X-RSTP", and is a pioneer in the Industrial Ethernet arena. This technology combines the advantages of both X-Ring and RSTP. By implementing the X-RSTP, the installation cost can be reduced, and the multiple ring connections to the backbone can be fulfilled with needs of the redundant protections.

Ethernet Direct offers numerous redundant technologies depending on any given architecture or applications. As an emerging leader in the Industrial Ethernet technology, Ethernet Direct promises security and stability in industrial Ethernet applications.
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