18 October 2016

Mentor Graphics Nucleus RTOS Advances EtherCAT Real-Time Performance for Industrial Automation

WILSONVILLE, Ore., October 18, 2016 —

  • Mentor Graphics® Nucleus® real-time operating system (RTOS) advances real-time EtherCAT®  performance for industrial automation with integration to the Koenig-pa GmbH (KPA) EtherCAT® Master stack.
  • The reference software drastically reduces development costs and time to market for ARM®-based SOCs by providing the building blocks to develop a highly optimized industrial automation solution.  
  • The solution provides flexibility to customize functionality for industrial applications.  

Mentor Graphics Corporation (NASDAQ: MENT) today announced EtherCAT Master protocol support for the Mentor® Embedded Nucleus® real-time operating system (RTOS) targeting high-performance, next-generation industrial automation devices.  The Nucleus RTOS combined with the KPA EtherCAT Master stack provides a fully integrated reference software solution that streamlines development time and cost for device developers.  Designed to meet the rigorous timing requirements for industrial automation, the reference solution delivers EtherCAT cycle times of 100 microsecond cycles (10,000 frames per second) with an extremely low jitter rate for precise device synchronization.  The Nucleus RTOS with KPA EtherCAT Master protocol is suitable for devices with hard and soft real-time requirements in industrial automation, as well as medical, energy and other market segments.

The need for high speed, time synchronization and efficiency in industrial automation networks places new requirements on industrial device manufacturers.  EtherCAT is a highly scalable Ethernet protocol that is being adopted at a rapid rate.  The Nucleus RTOS with KPA EtherCAT Master provides industrial device manufacturers with a fully integrated solution that improves communication performance. This results in greater throughput to reduce manufacturing cost, improve yield and system accuracy.  The reference solution provides developers with a lightweight, highly scalable solution that can be configured for ARM®-based platforms. 

The low-overhead KPA EtherCAT stack has been optimized for embedded devices.  The real-time performance of the Nucleus RTOS and the deterministic qualities of EtherCAT communication provides the speed and synchronization required in today’s industrial automation devices.  The EtherCAT solution includes the KPA EtherCAT Studio configuration tool, and sample applications which have been integrated with Nucleus RTOS and the Sourcery™ CodeBench integrated development environment (IDE).  


"Industrial system developers continue to push the envelope with low latency cycle times and high frame rates to meet the real-time requirements needed in today’s demanding applications,” stated Bahman Radjabi, president of RADIC Technologies, Inc., “Industrial devices require a proven real-time operating system that not only meets the highest levels of safety but can meet the most stringent performance requirements, exactly what Mentor’s Nucleus RTOS with KPA EtherCAT delivers.”  

“Our Nucleus RTOS with KPA EtherCAT protocol stack provides industrial system developers with the ability to meet the highest levels of performance for industrial automation while reducing development time,” stated Scot Morrison, general manager, Platforms Business Unit, Mentor Graphics Embedded Systems Division. “Industrial designers want a fully integrated solution from recognized leaders to minimize development risk and focus on product innovation.”  

About Mentor Embedded

The Mentor Graphics Embedded Systems Division enables embedded development for a variety of applications in numerous market segments including internet of things (IoT), automotive, industrial, medical, smart energy, and consumer electronics. Embedded developers can create systems with the latest processors and micro-controllers with commercially supported and customizable Linux®-based solutions including the industry-leading Sourcery CodeBench and Mentor Embedded Linux products.  For real-time systems, developers can take advantage of the highly scalable, safety-certifiable Nucleus RTOS. For more information, visit www.mentor.com/embedded

(Mentor Graphics, Mentor and Nucleus are registered trademarks and Sourcery is a trademark of Mentor Graphics Corporation. All other company or product names are the registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective owner.)

EtherCAT® is registered trademark and patented technology, licensed by Beckhoff Automation GmbH, Germany

The registered trademark Linux® is used pursuant to a sublicense from LMI, the exclusive licensee of Linus Torvalds, owner of the mark on a world-wide basis.

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Larry Toda