Real-time control technology meets the needs of real-time industrial communication development-Part 2

Part 1 of this series of blog posts introduced the market opportunities for EtherCAT slave stack solutions for C2000™ microcontrollers (MCUs) and introduced a three-stage guide for getting started quickly with slave stack development.

Part 1 of this series of blog posts introduced the market opportunities for EtherCAT slave stack solutions for C2000™ microcontrollers (MCUs) and introduced a three-stage guide for getting started quickly with slave stack development.

In addition to these three aspects of the development process, what other measures TI has taken to make our solution more attractive than the traditional stack migration solution? First of all, we applied the knowledge of C28 CPU architecture and adjusted the related software to better play the functions of the CPU.For example, we optimized interrupt handling, direct memory access (DMA) and control (pulse width modulation[PWM]) Synchronization routines to make full use of on-chip hardware. In addition, we have collaborated with Beckhoff to update/enhance the released stack to support data processing and make it more suitable for C28 CPUs.

Talking about cooperating with Beckhoff to support serial peripheral interface (SPI) and parallel (external memory interface)[EMIF]) The C28 slave stack and hardware abstraction layer (HAL) of the communication are used as part of its slave stack configuration tool (SSC). Based on previous C2000 MCU experience, you will find the reference software solution version “Plugfest-ready”.

Supporting SPI and EMIF hardware interfaces provides implementation options, allowing the system to trade off the complexity of printed circuit board (PCB) routing with the lowest latency communication. In addition, when using the direct test version of the Beckhoff Et1100 device, you can adjust the SPI and EMIF HAL drivers to support other EtherCAT slave device silicon solutions, including TI’s AMIC110 SoC (SPI-please contact Sitara™ Forum) or slave Hardware field programmable gate array (FPGA) example (EMIF or SPI), such as Beckhoff ET1816.

In the SPI and EMIF processor data interface (PDI), there is no difference between the EtherCAT slave stack code and the application code, only the device name and product code are different, so even if the SPI and EMIF slave nodes are both at the same In the network, they may also be different. When the EMIF slave nodes are in the same network, they may be different.

The C2000 MCU feature of TI’s EtherCAT software package is an example of an Echoback application. Although the application demonstration is not complicated, it is only the output data structure of the slave node sent back to the input, which can be viewed with any EtherCAT master or TwinCAT master. For more details, you can visit the “EtherCAT Solution Reference Guide”.

By including the Echoback application, TI showed an example of the basic use of the stack software and provided you with a placeholder for you to create your own application. Following the Echoback example will make it easier to take advantage of TI’s many optimizations for stack and HAL software modules, and provide a good example of EtherCAT Slave Information (ESI) files. In addition, Echoback has also been included in the rapid evaluation binary project.

Real-time control technology meets the needs of real-time industrial communication development-Part 2

Figure 1: TMDSECATNCD379 EtherCAT circuit board image

Finally, as shown in Figure 1, the EtherCAT controlCARD hardware platform utilizes the common 180-pin interface of other C2000 MCU control cards. EtherCAT controlCARD is physically compatible with any 180-pin C2000 application evaluation module (EVM) or docking station, so EtherCAT connections can be added to many existing real-time control application examples. For example, you can use the EtherCAT controlCARD in conjunction with the Industrial Drive Development Kit (IDDK) to add real-time connections to the servo using fast current loop and/or position manager technology.

It is also worth mentioning that the EtherCAT controlCARD can operate independently. Use the Micro USB cable to power the hardware, no docking station or EVM power supply is required. For details, see “TMDSECATCNCD379D EtherCAT Solution Reference Guide”. This helps reduce hardware complexity in multi-node network testing and configuration.

As you can see, C2000 DesignDRIVE EtherCAT support has taken some additional steps to simplify the development of slave nodes and help you achieve outstanding performance when running the stack on our microcontroller. In other articles in this series, we will detail the software support provided in the three development stages outlined earlier.

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