THE OPEN DeviceNet Association (ODVA) reports that Cisco Systems Inc. has increased its support to the association by becoming a founding member. An ODVA member since 2003, Cisco will help ODVA develop and manage its industrial network technologies, and serve on its board of directors and technical review board. Cisco's increased involvement in ODVA reportedly will further enhance ODVA's ability to drive open, interoperable and sustainable network standards directed at unifying plant floor automation with Factory IT. "Cisco is committed to bringing Ethernet to the factory floor," says Scott Westlake, Ciscos worldwide manufacturing industry director. "ODVA's EtherNet/IP is fully compatible with Cisco's commercial networking technologies and it is the most developed, proven and complete standard industrial Ethernet network available today. Cisco has increased its level of support to ODVA because the association provides an excellent community of manufacturers of industrial network technologies with which Cisco can work to develop network standards and interoperability for the manufacturing enterprise, including security, wireless, IP telephony, power over Ethernet and real-time Ethernet." This increased support from one of the major global suppliers of network and Internet business solutions reportedly reflects the continued convergence of industrial and commercial networks and the growing, widespread adoption of EtherNet/IP, which is ODVA's adaptation of the Common Industrial Protocol (CIP) using Internet and Ethernet standards. EtherNet/IP has led the industry in extending Ethernet TCP/IP to the plant floor. By incorporating CIP, a media-independent protocol that can coexist with any other Internet protocol running on top of the standard TCP/UDP transport layer, such as FTP, HTTP, SMTP, BOOTP, SNMP, DHCP and OPC, EtherNet/IP provides interoperability among manufacturing enterprise networks and enables Internet and enterprise connectivity anywhere at any time. Consequently, CIP networks allow users to integrate their manufacturing networks, including control, synchronization and motion, safety, information, configuration and diagnostics, with enterprise-level Ethernet networks and the Internet.