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WorldFIP sees its future on the Net

01 April, 2000

WorldFIP sees its future on the Net

Internet functions are to be integrated into the WorldFIP field bus in an attempt to stake its claim as the ideal Internet-based industrial communications technology.The decision to migrate towards the Internet was taken at the WorldFIP Association`s annual assembly in February.

Jean-Pierre Hauet, the Association`s secretary and senior vice-President of Alstom, says it is logical to link WorldFIP to the Internet "to provide users with new global functions such as supervision, telediagnostics, remote maintenance and plant evolution management".

He says that WorldFIP`s design makes connection with the Internet Protocol (IP) possible without affecting the performance of the field bus. WorldFIP offices are offering a set of software and tools called FIPWeb for developing an interface between WorldFIP and the Internet. The suite includes the elements needed to communicate between the Internet and micro Web servers embedded in WorldFIP field devices.

Although WorldFIP is one of the eight incompatible protocols included in the recently agreed IEC field bus standard IEC 61158, the WorldFIP Association is not happy with the standard.

"It is true that WorldFIP is part of this new standard, but the standard as a whole make no economic sense and is not up to end-users` expectations," says the Association`s chairman, Marc Desjardins. "It is the regrettable result of a rearguard action."

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