Tuesday 11 May 2010

Interface for industrial measurement & control

Acromag Releases ActiveX and .NET Controls for Modbus TCP and RTU I/O Modules

Acromag has released a series of ActiveX and .NET controls to help engineers developing measurement and control systems in a Visual Basic or C++ environment communicate with their Ethernet and Modbus I/O modules. Acromag's AMRN/AMRX (for Modbus/RTU) and AMTN/AMTX (for Modbus/TCP) controls packages provide a fast, easy way to interface with any Modbus slave device (not just Acromag I/O) connected to a PC's serial or network ports. These software tools start at just $225. Free evaluation versions are available.

“Within minutes, your Visual Basic, Visual C, .NET, Excel, or other compatible applications will be talking Modbus protocol to interface with I/O modules monitoring or controlling your process,”
claims Donald Lupo, Acromag’s Marketing and Sales Director for Process Products.

Two software support packages are offered for Modbus/RTU and two for Modbus/TCP devices. The AMRX and AMTX packages are easy to use ActiveX controls that simplify communication with slave devices connected to a PC’s wired or wireless network. They include a timer for polled data acquisition and a floating point conversion control. AMRN and AMTN are Windows Forms Controls (.NET) that provide a quick way to communicate with slave devices connected to a PC’s serial or Ethernet port.

Other key features make this software very easy to use. Any container application that can embed ActiveX controls can use these tools. At design time, you can access Modbus devices from the software’s test property page to make start-up and troubleshooting a snap – all without writing a single line of code. Talking to a Modbus slave is as simple as calling a function with the necessary arguments. The software automatically builds the command, appends a CRC, sends the request over the network, and validates the response. Application programs just read and write simple 16-bit data values. ActiveX controls include a help file and examples for Excel, Visual Basic, and Visual C++. The .NET controls include a help file and examples for Visual Basic, C#, and Managed C++.

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