The 18th General Assembly Meeting of PI North America, Sept. 26-27 in Scottsdale, Ariz., celebrated Profibus and Profinet gains in market share. According to Executive Director Michael Bryant, "The Profibus market is expected to grow in 2012 by a further 4 million nodes to reach a total of about 44 million. It's reassuring that Profibus continues to flourish even as Profinet is escalating its market share. Today, every fifth device sold is for Profinet, compared to some years ago when it was 1 in 15."
During the part of the meeting focused on the process industries, Hunter Harrington from the Profi Interface Center in Johnson City, Tenn., a North American PI Competence Center, described the Profinet proxy solution that allows sub-networks such as Profibus PA, HART and Foundation fieldbus to be connected to Profinet.
The process theme was later emphasized by Jim Simmons from DuPont who described the fieldbus "learning curve" triggered by his company's purchase of a Siemens PCS7 control system. He sung the praises of fieldbus and Profibus in particular. "Through that project, I have become a fieldbus proselytizer within DuPont, I believe any new control system installation should have to justify not using fieldbus technology."