The When, Where and Why of Ethernet
The somewhat manufactured controversy over “Ethernet” versus “Fieldbus” continues to rage on, albeit in a slightly weaker form. Some months ago analyst firm IMS published a report that seemingly foretold the death of “fieldbus” networks in favor of Ethernet-based protocols. The issue of fieldbus and Ethernet being mutually exclusive is tenuous at best. The FOUNDATION fieldbus specification, for example, includes H1 FOUNDATION fieldbus that operates over twisted pair wire and is designed specifically for use with process sensors and actuators. We also have HSE, which is a high speed Ethernet based network that shares the same fundamental block-based structure of H1.