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Schneider introduces the world's first ePAC

Schneider introduces the world's first ePAC Schneider Electric, the global specialist in energy management, has announced the launch of the new Modicon M580 - the next generation PAC (Programmable Automation Controller) with open Ethernet technology at its core.  The pioneering automation controller is the key component of PlantStruxure, the company's integrated automation architecture.

Developed in response to Industry 4.0 market trends demanding that automation control systems are open to connect to an ever increasing array of intelligent devices, the M580 can connect all field devices, such as variable speed drives, HMI, SCADA, motor starters, electrical distribution and energy management functions, in to one complete and open system.

The pioneering device offers significant performance improvements to end-users, as its Native IP routing eliminates communication co-processors, protocol conversions and bottlenecks, resulting in outstanding levels of transparency.

As the backplane of the Modicon M580 ePAC uses standard unmodified Ethernet/IP, it is open and easy for end-users to integrate existing solutions directly into PlantStruxure architectures.  Further to this, the device's in-built web-server is based on latest HTML5 and together with an in-rack Wi-Fi module, it is ready to support Android and IOS smart devices for easy remote access, commissioning and diagnostics, meaning that maintenance time can be drastically reduced.

Dave Sutton, product marketing manager at Schneider Electric, comments: "The new M580 is truly a market-leading product, offering our customers the ideal solution to take them into the digital age.  It's fully open nature means that it can be seamlessly integrated with third party technology and has been designed with cyber security considerations in mind.

"In addition, the M580 is fully scalable, so it can be added to as the site grows, avoiding the need to ever have to rip out and start again.  Its flexible nature means that it is possible to simply add additional racks to cope with an increase in demand with minimal downtime."

The Modicon M580 has Achilles Level 2 certification, meaning it is robust to the threat of cyber-attack, providing security settings for access and web services including password authentication and IP filtering.
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