FLOW-BUS is a Fieldbus communication protocol designed by Bronkhorst; based on RS485 technology for digital communication between multiple digital devices. This communication protocol offers the possibility of host-control by PC (i.e. FlowSuite, LabVIEW, Python).
FlowSuite is a WindowsOS application for monitoring and service purposes on Bronkhorst digital instruments via a single interface or with multiple windows for multiple devices. FlowSuite offers good insight into the dynamic behavior of Bronkhorst flow meters and controllers.
Advantages of Using FlowSuite:
- Allows adjustment of controller, alarm, and counter settings
- Built-in trend chart graph for 4 devices, each device can trend up to 7 inputs
- Measured data in a comma-separated file (CSV), thus serving as a data logger
Communication is via RS232 using the PC USB port. FlowSuite has a fixed 38400 bps baud rate. FlowSuite polls and scan each device separately and as you add devices to a USB port, the longer the update time for the software. For more information and download please visit: Get Bronkhorst FlowSuite – Microsoft Store or download Bronkhorst FlowSuite from the Microsoft App store.
Using FLOW-BUS Fieldbus Communication Protocol for Process Control
Bronkhorst instruments are equipped with a micro-controller for exchanging parameter value information with other instruments and devices connected to the same FLOW-BUS system and/or via RS232 to a PC. Below are examples of the CEM (Controlled Evaporative and Mixing) System, EL-FLOW Prestige, and mini CORI-FLOW (other examples can be provided, such as the MASS-STREAM, IN-FLOW, pressure controllers, or combination of devices).
- Bronkhorst devices are connected via FLOW-BUS, RS485 (red cables)
- PC USB port connects via RS232 to the first device (green cable)
- FlowSuite displays the PV (Process Variables), controls the SP (Setpoint), along with graphing and data logging up to 4 devices
- Standard RJ45 Shielded (F)TP patch cable or M12 (DeviceNet) cable supplies the FLOW-BUS signal and 24 Vdc power
- 1A @ 24Vdc or 24 Watts is the max power for RJ45 Shielded (F)TP patch cable, 4A for the M12 cables
Other Fieldbus Communication Protocol Considerations:
FLOW-BUS and Modbus is a LINE topology serial communication protocol over RS485 Each device must be “daisy chained” one after another with begin and end resistors.
- Max cable length from Multiport Adapter to Device is 0.5m (20”)
- LINE Topology
- STAR Topology FORBIDDEN
- Is not like a PoE Ethernet Switch and not to be connect like an Ethernet switch