| Communications Hardware
Unlike Sercos I and II, no ASIC is required by Sercos
III as a communications device. Instead, lower cost
standard modules such as a FPGA (Field Programmable
Gate Array) or GPCC (General Purpose Communication Controller)
are used. Industrial Ethernet couplings and cable are
used instead of the current fiber optic couplings and
cable, which means lower costs. This will allow the
Sercos interface to be implemented in very cost-sensitive
products, such as sub-1 kW systems.
Because a more flexible hardware solution is implemented
in Sercos-III, the development of a Sercos core (Sercos-III
IP) was necessary. With this, manufacturers of components
and systems can purchase an off-the-shelf FPGA, load
the Sercos III core onto it, and combine it with their
own logic components. The FPGA includes all hardware
functions, such as timing, synchronization and processing
of cyclic and non-cyclic data on the basis of two
integrated Ethernet MACs.
Cores for three communications controllers are available,
based on the low-cost Xilinx Spartan-3 FPGA platform.
The SERCON100 Master and Slave Controllers are available
for a Spartan-3 FPGA with 400K system gates (XC3S400).
Both controllers are integrated in a FT256 BGA housing
so that a common hardware design can be realized.
This makes a very powerful, low-cost standard hardware
platform available, which not only reduces implementation
efforts, but also ensures a high acceptance by suppliers.
In addition, the SERCON100S Slave Controller is available
for a Spartan-3 FPGA with 200K system gates (XC3S200)
in a TQ144 housing, which further reduces the costs
and efforts for a slave hardware design.
The following table gives an overview of the different
FPGA device type: XILINX XC3S400 or XC3S200
Package: FT256C (256 ball grid) or TQ144C (144
Speed grade: -4
Documentation for Sercos III Core
SERCON100M Master Reference Manual
Revision: 0.0 Size: 185Kb Date: May 12, 2005
69 pages (available on request)
SERCON100S/SL Slave Reference Manual
Revision: 0.0 Size: 1.147Kb Date: May 12, 2005
81 pages (available on request)
Sercos III Reference Design incl. Bill of material
Revision: 1.0 Size: 185Kb Date: May 12, 2005
4 pages (available on request)
Revision: 1.5 Size: 268Kb Date: July 7, 2005
The Sercos III designs are provided to programmers
in the form of a *.bit file and for loading by the
application in the form of a *.mcs file (Intel format,
If you have questions regarding the SERCON100, and/or
if you are interested in receiving the documentation
and/or licensing the designs please contact us:
XILINX Spartan-3 Documentation
Complete Data Sheet
(All four modules of Spartan-3 data sheet in one Acrobat
PDF file for easy searching),
Version: 2.1 Size: 4916Kb Date: 04/26/06
Spartan-3 ASCII pinouts and Excel footprints
ASCII text files and Excel spreadsheet maps for each
Version: 1.4.2 Size: 345Kb Date: 07/13/05
Spartan-3 FPGAs can be purchased from any of Xilinx'
III core is available for the Altera Cyclone II and
Cyclone III FPGA families. For
more information on Cyclone II.
more information on Cyclone III.
Hilscher Sercos III Network Co-Processor
Hilscher GmbH has integrated the Sercos core into
a General Purpose Communication Controller (GPCC).
The company recently announced the arrival of the
first silicon for the netX 500, an ARM926 based System
on Chip network communication controller. Evaluation
boards, starter-kit and board support packages for
Windows-CE and Linux are available from Hilscher. Three versions of the netX are planned.
netX Block Diagram
The netX controllers are able to support a number
of different Industrial Ethernet protocols. Thus,
it is possible to implement control and drive devices
that can easily be adjusted to the respective Industrial
Ethernet protocol simply by using the appropriate
driver software. This is a huge advantage, not just
for the manufacturers of components. The OEM needs
to handle only one type of wiring. The end user profits
from not having to use different hardware configurations
in case he is using several different Industrial Ethernet
protocols in his plant, such as Sercos III, Profinet
and Ethernet IP.
You can find additional information on the Hilscher