TwinCAT I/O is a real-time driver for Windows programs running under Windows NT/2000/XP/Vista/CE or Windows 7. Program variables, the I/O devices present in the system and the connected I/O channels are brought into the proper relationship with one another.
Openness: all standards
TwinCAT I/O supports all established fieldbuses – even simultaneously.
TwinCAT I/O – properties
TwinCAT I/O provides the connected I/O channels as a structure and organises the mapping of the data transfer.
TwinCAT I/O permits server process images to be linked bit-wise to I/O channels and provides tools which can, for instance, link a lot of channels continuously with a single command. The connections can be moved by drag and drop.
With the aid of the TwinCAT I/O system, the inputs and outputs of a task can be cyclically exchanged with the outputs and inputs of another task – the data consistency remains intact. The TwinCAT I/O system is variable-oriented, which means that the smallest unit which can be addressed and linked is a variable, and the smallest size of a variable is one bit.
At the server’s fieldbus level and the level of the process image, commissioning and servicing are assisted by online display. TwinCAT I/O generates address relationships (mappings) between tasks and I/O devices, and provides powerful online tools:
Diagnostic data is displayed in a consistent form for all I/O devices.
TwinCAT I/O manages variables, making import and export functions available at all levels.
TcTimer API under CE
On Beckhoff CE devices TwinCAT I/O is available with the TcTimer extension. The TcTimer API offers a real-time timer (scalable from 100 µs) and access to the logical process image. Data exchange with the fieldbus is triggered with a method call. The TcTimer API enables external applications to create deterministic applications that are synchronised up to the IO fieldbus level.
|PC hardware||standard PC/IPC hardware, no extras|
|Operating systems||version-dependent: Windows NT/2000/XP/Vista, Windows 7, Windows NT/XP Embedded, Windows CE (only runtime)|
|Real-time||Beckhoff real-time kernel as a component of TwinCAT|
|User program||User program running in user mode which can, for instance, run cyclically as a multimedia task (“soft” real-time). Access to the I/O process image is provided via cyclical calls of DLL functions.
Under CE: hard real-time with synchronised access to process image
|Memory||only limited by the size of the computer’s RAM (max. 2 GB under NT/2000/XP/Vista)|
|Cycle time||50 µs upwards selectable|
|Programming||application program in any high-level language, e.g. C++, Delphi|
|Debugging||via the standard debugging tools of the high-level language used|
|I/O system||free choice of fieldbus: EtherCAT, PROFIBUS DP/MC, CANopen, DeviceNet, Interbus, SERCOS, Lightbus, Ethernet (printer port, COM port, USB), PC cards: generic memory DPRAM support|
|Connectivity||variable access via OPC, Beckhoff ADS OCX/DLL (Automation Device Specification)
(under CE: in addition TcTimer API)
|TX1100||license for using the I/O DLL for data exchange with Windows programs|