Shortened evaluation time of industrial networking applications

5th March 2018
Anna Flockett

Renesas Electronics Corporation has announced its latest solution kit based on the RZ/N1L Group of microprocessors (MPUs), in addition to the RZ/N1D group, which are for high-end processors for master devices including Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) and the RZ/N1S Group for mid-range devices including Human Machine Interface (HMI), the RZ/N Series includes the RZ/N1L Group is optimised for slave devices including remote IO and communication modules, and networked drives.

Solution kits for RZ/N1D and RZ/N1S are already available. With the release of the RZ/N1L solution kit, evaluation kits for all groups of the RZ/N Series are now available, enabling evaluation of network functions for a wide range of industrial equipment.

Ethernet-based industrial network development requires system manufacturers to select external components, contact various software providers to select the proper protocol stack, and set up the development environment. All these steps make it difficult for system manufacturers to quick start Ethernet-based industry network developments, delaying time-to-market of their application.

The RZ/N1L Solution Kit includes a highly integrated RZ/N1L development board and a comprehensive software package which enable engineers to jump start evaluation of industry-leading industrial Ethernet protocols including EtherCAT, PROFINET, and EtherNet/IP without any upfront costs or complexity.

The RZ/N1L Solution Kit also includes a general software application programming interface (API) that simplifies application development and mitigates design risk.These features allow system manufacturers to shorten evaluation time of their application up to three months.

Key features of the RZ/N1L Solution Kit

  • RZ/N1L development board reduces design risk and accelerates time-to-market The solution kit features a highly integrated RZ/N1L development board, which provides system developers with access to the resource of the RZ/N1L MPU, including a two-channel Ethernet port for use in daisy-chain topologies or as an end-node slave with system monitoring. The board includes a 32 MB external flash memory for code and data, a debug port, push buttons and LEDs and is USB powered. The stand-alone RZ/N1L development board acts as a reference design for component selection and layout that applies to hardware design guidelines associated with the different protocol requirements, which reduces design risk and delays.
  • General API provides common software infrastructure for leading industrial network protocols and accelerates application development The RZ/N1L Solution Kit leverages the general API that acts as a generic open abstraction layer and provides unified support for different network protocols from leading stack partners in addition to compiler and OS environments. System developers can easily switch between protocols as needed, with minimal impact on the application software.

Sample code and protocol stacks are provided with the solution kit with no additional costs, allowing developers to easily evaluate different protocols with their applications. For example, the remote IO reference, as well as the EtherCAT sample reference provide easy frameworks for building a wide range of networking functionalities.

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