Precision Time Protocol stack works with standard network cards - Embedded.com

Precision Time Protocol stack works with standard network cards

Ravensburg, Germany—Offering a software-only technique that synchronizes distributed devices with high accuracy and eliminates the need for additional hardware, Real-Time Systems GmbH (RTS) is debuting an implementation of the IEEE-1588 Precision Time Protocol.

The PTP software eliminates the need for hardware-based time-stamping, and delivers possible accuracies of ±5-µs or better, using standard network cards.

Real-Time Systems GmbH expects its software to find use in instrumentation, automation systems, and process control networks.

In the past, implementations of the IEEE-1588 protocol requiring high accuracy also required hardware-implemented time-stamping. Typically hardware-implemented time-stamping would add extra non-standard components and costs.

No Hardware Implementation

In contrast, this RTS implementation achieves high accuracy using only common network interfaces, and doesn't require hardware-implemented time-stamping. The product includes all servo algorithms, regulators, filters, and a PTP-clock based on hardware timer and direct timer access.

RTS's IEEE-1588 stack is also fully tested and comes with documentation and an example implementation on the Wind River VxWorks for x86 operating system. The stack is also available with source code to qualified users.

Full Spec And Function

RTS's IEEE-1588 Master and Slave software stack incorporates the full specification and functionality of the Precision Clock Synchronization Protocol for Networked Measurement and Control Systems . Through PTP, multiple devices can be automatically synchronized with the most accurate clock found in a packet-based network (which is typically Ethernet ).

The protocol stack automatically determines the most accurate clock, the Grand Master Clock . During operation and after initial synchronization, PTP realtime clocks are constantly adjusted by exchanging timing messages.

Statistical Techniques

The RTS implementation uses statistical techniques to further reduce residual fluctuations. Because the RTS IEEE-1588 protocol stack supports the PTP hot-pluggable function requirement, devices may join or leave a network at any time.

Administration free and requires minimal resources of host components or networks. To monitor, tune and analyze a PTP network, free Open Source tools are available.

For more details contact Real-Time Systems GmbH, Gartenstrasse 33, D-88212 Ravensburg, Germany. Phone: +49 (0) 751 359 558 0. E-mail: Gerd.Lammers@real-time-systems.com

Real-Time Systems , +49 (0) 751 359 558 0, www.real-time-systems.com

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