Profibus, first developed in 1989, has evolved over the last 20 years to become the world’s most successful fieldbus protocol.
Soon, the cost-savings and networking potential of the new protocol became evident. A supportive infrastructure emerged within the automation community comprising of vendors, developers, system integrators, marketers and end users — each with a common interest to ensure the long-term viability of the Profibus technology.
The glue that holds this support network together is Profibus International (PI), the largest automation community in the world. No other automation fieldbus organisation has the same kind of global influence and reach.
The 25 regional Profibus associations around the world representing PI are responsible for all marketing, support and technical activities linked to the PROFIBUS and PROFINET brands and technologies.
Featured prominently among these activities are technical support and a range of commercial services that end users periodically require to ensure the smooth operation of their commercial investment in Profibus.
The Profibus Association of Australia was established as a Regional Profibus Association (not for profit) in 2002, and it is their mandate to facilitate a network of training (PITC) and support (PICC) centres across the continent and simultaneously marketing the benefits of the technology to all automation markets.
In Australia, the Profibus International Competence and Training Centre (PICC/PITC) was established in partnership with Emerson Automation Solutions to supply these technical services.
The Sydney-based PICC/PITC has qualified Profibus experts on stand-by to answer troubleshooting questions relating to all technical issues. On-site visits can also be arranged at short notice.
The PICC is Australia’s only Competence Centre fully accredited by PI and therefore qualified to offer installation certification and commissioning services as well as certified Profibus Training. This ensures that networks comply with international standards and work properly before commissioning.
The automation centre located at Emerson’s Milperra offices has a Test Laboratory for certification of Profibus devices. This enables vendors to have their products tested on Profibus compatibility.
The centre also contains a wide variety of control systems and instrumentation for potential Profibus users and suppliers to become acquainted with the technology using their devices of choice in a user-friendly environment.
The interactive model demonstrates the flexibility and ease with which instruments seamlessly transfer data between Profibus DP (Distributed Peripherals) and Profibus PA (Process Automation), and from instruments to control systems and back.