IO-Link-LabkitZMD AG, a global supplier of analog and mixed-signal solutions for automotive, industrial, and medical applications, announced today the availability of two new evaluation tools which will allow customers to quickly and easily develop IO-Link master applications as well as device applications. The evaluations and development tools are built around the company’s ZIOL2401 IO-Link high-voltage driver which supports IO-Link master ports, IO-Link device ports, and standard I/O applications. The ZIOL2401 evaluation tools help designers to reduce the time to production by enabling them to develop and test both the master (controller) and the sensor end of the link.

IO-Link is a point-to-point connection system for sensors which is widely used in industrial and commercial sensor interface applications. With ZMDI’s evaluation tools, engineers can develop and test IO-Link master and device designs quickly and thoroughly. Design prototypes can be installed in actual systems for further test and evaluation. Since the ZIOL2401 also supports conventional serial I/O, the same evaluation tools, and the same ZIOL2401 IC, can be used in all sensor interface designs.

“Using the same IC and development tools for all serial I/O saves design time and shortens time to market,” says Bernhard Huber, Business Line Manager Standard Components at ZMDI. “Furthermore, it allows designers to apply a proven design to a new product.”

The ZIOL2401 Starter Kit consists of the ZIOL2401 USB stick, a board with a microcontroller, ZIOL2401 IC and USB interface. It also includes an extension board consisting of a control cable connector, protection circuit and a simple test interface. The Starter Kit allows designers to implement serial interfaces and control basic I/O and switching functions.

The ZIOL2401 Lab Kit consists of three separate boards: a microcontroller board, a cable-board and the ZIOL2401 prototyping board. The partitioned design gives engineers the ability to develop complex applications with greater ease, because the prototyping board can be transferred into their existing system design.

The heart of both evaluation systems is the ZIOL2401 device, today’s sole available IO-Link controller on the market that can support master interfaces as well as device interfaces. The device, and the evaluation tools, are compatible with both 3.3V and 5V logic levels. An adjustable on-chip DC/DC converter generates up to 15V to power application circuits. Complete schematic and wiring details for both kits are included in the documentation.

The development software for the Starter Kit and the Lab Kit allows designers to individually program bit-level functions via a graphical interface, or use a command-line interface to run complex evaluation procedures. The software runs under Windows XP and Vista, as well as Windows 7.

The ZIOL2401 Starter Kit is priced at 49.00 € (69.00 USD), and the Lab Kit at 99.00 € (139.00 USD). The evaluation tools are available now from ZMDI.

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