Ethernet-APL Technology for safe Automation

Today’s Industrial Ethernet connects any standard ethernet-based protocols. It flexibly integrates devices based on open and vendor-specific (safety) protocols.

  • Ethernet-APL Technology for safe Automation
    Ethernet-APL Technology for safe Automation

Digitization can improve plant economic operation. A plant’s entire life cycle has aspects that can contribute to operational economy. Faster planning, engineering, and setup, for example, allow shorter times to market. However, maintenance and change management should also be more efficient. Plant lifetime costs can easily exceed initial investment. More flexibility is essential to ensure maximum profit from minimal investment.

Finding a good price/performance ratio

Automation design has always sought more flexibility in meeting individual needs. Neither centralized nor decentralized solutions are generally best: either way, a universal network provides the most efficient solution. It can ease changes to plant planning and operation. 
Balancing cost against benefits is challenging. E.g. developing remote IO with individually configurable IO types is wasteful over-engineering – and provides only half the solution. A fully flexible solution comprises a universal communication platform connecting all automation devices like sensors, actuators, controllers, safety PLCs, AMS etc. 

The road to flexible automation

Ethernet in Automation has been promoted since 2000. Now it is acknowledged as the most flexible communication solution with proven robustness, availability, and universality.
Today’s Industrial Ethernet connects any standard ethernet-based protocols. It flexibly integrates devices based on open and vendor-specific (safety) protocols. Individual advantages include:

  • SafeEthernet seamless integration of complete HIMA safety platforms with minimal engineering effort. Specialized functionalities like huge safety data volumes, routing, full redundancy and reload make SafeEthernet a very powerful protocol.
  • OPC-UA, a perfectly integrated, security- approved higher-level solution. 
  • PROFINET, combined with PROFIsafe, is an open solution offering future expansion with best of breed devices. 

Ethernet-APL logically enhances the present Ethernet physical layer. This simple 2-wire physical layer with 10Mbit bit rate seamlessly connects intelligent devices even into Ex-Zone 1.

Standard Ethernet is future-proof. It allows visionary solutions like field control unified in one infrastructure for safety and non-safety - all while maintaining full separation and thus maximum security, availability, and safety. Establishing this concept consistently throughout the entire plant gives full, entire life cycle data transparency. HIMA calls this concept the Independent Open Integration. It facilitates future automation solutions of minimum complexity and maximum cost-effectiveness.


Industrial Networks are key to digitalization and replacement of analog values with real ones. 

Powerful, uniform standard Ethernet networks can keep installations current and competitive.

HIMA’s safety platform allows standard Ethernet-based centralized, decentralized, and distributed solutions. Network where possible, wire where necessary.

Standard Ethernet with best of breed devices allows tailored solutions and prevents vendor lock-ins. With worldwide coverage, together with widespread PN/PS industrial protocols, availability of spare parts, trained staff and therefore uptime is guaranteed.

HIMA develops its full compatible PN/PS solution together with Softing to guarantee a flexible and future-proof implementation.

Ethernet Networks fit brown- and greenfield installations. PROFINET connects to existing PROFIBUS segments using Proxies, allowing direct device access and integration. 

In many cases Ethernet APL can even be used with the former 2-wire fieldbus installations. PN/PS with Ethernet APL, much faster than any fieldbus, allows wide area integration of many more devices with higher information accessibility.

Certification guarantees PN/PS device interoperability. With strong industry focus, PI has always considered long-term compatibility.

HIMA developed PN/PS to fully exploit safety limits for your plant’s maximum efficiency. HIMA Independent Open Integration always adapts to your individual requirements.

For more information visit the HIMA website