The technology allows a network of up to 33 devices (one master + 32 slaves) or 480 bytes of data to appear to the PLC as a single device on a single connection using a single IP address. By reducing the number of connections the PLC sees, the user will be able to create high-density I/O networks and still utilize a low-cost PLC. It works by making the first device in the line a BEEP master, which can be done via the device webserver. The BEEP master can then scan the entire network and create a new data map that includes all of the downstream devices, with all device configuration options saved in the master. The technology also supports drop-in device replacement, reducing downtime and overall expenses: a technician can simply replace a slave device with a new device to keep the system online. The BEEP master will automatically recognize the device, assign it an IP address, and download the parameters to it. The technology has been integrated into many of the company’s multiprotocol digital block I/O modules, including the BL Compact push button station, the TBEN-L and TBEN-S digital stations, and several variants of the FEN20 module. Additionally, it is compatible with all standard Ethernet components and does not require special equipment.
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