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BrunoHNONAutomation&ControlEngineerFreelanceServicesinfactoryautomation,designing,

programming,installingandsubcontractingworldwide
HARTinterfacetocommunicatewithmeasurementdevices.
HARTmodem
Fundamental
WhatisaHARTmodem?
Signalmodulation
Locallink
Remotelink
Basicconnectionsandcabling
Basicelectricaldrawing
Seealso...
HARTprotocol

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Automation>Resources>Technologies>Networks>HART>HARTmodem

HARTMODEM
Signalmodulation,Locallinkusage,Remotelinkusage,HARTmodembasicwiringandcabling,HARTmodem
basicelectricaldrawing.
TheHARTModemToExchangeDataWithInstrumentationDevices
AHARTmodemisamodulation/demodulationinterfaceusedininstrumentationtoexchangedata
betweenaterminalandameasurementdeviceincompliancewiththeHARTprotocol.
Thismodemcanbeembedded,whichisthecaseforawholeofmeasurementdevices,mobileterminaland
dataacquisitionsystems.
TheHARTmodemcanalsobeinstalledasanexternalperipheral.Itcouldbeusefulbecausenumerous
instrumentationsoftwareusedtosettingupandtocalibrateameasurementsensorortoestablishadiagnostic
(suchasthePactwaresoftware),oftenneedaserialporttocommunicatewiththetransducer.
Whichisthecaseformanyprogrammablelogiccontrollerslinkedwiththesedevicestoo.
ThenaHARTmodemcanbeasmarttoolforanautomationengineertoconfigureasensororanotherdevice,
ortomaintainitbylinkingeitherlocally(directly)orremotely.
Thisinterfaceisusuallycalleda"HARTmodem",becauseitoperatesthemodulationandthedemodulation
(whichisthedefinitionofa"modem",indeed).
Itissometimesalsocalled"HARTcommunicator"or"HARTtransmitter".
HARTSignalModulation
ThebasicsoftheHARTcompliantdatatransmissionistoaddtheHARTdatadigitalsignaltothe
analogicalsignalofthemeasureinthe420mAcurrentloop.
Thedatatobeexchangedcanbedatausedfortheconfigurationoftheinstrument,parameters,calibrationdata,
diagnosticsdataorservicesdata.
Thenonlyonemediumisusedtotransferthebothsignals.

ThedigitaldataexchangedwithaHARTtransducerarefrequencymodulated:
Abitwhichvalueis1iscodedbytheemitterwitha1200Hzfrequencysignal.
Abitwhichvalueis0iscodedbytheemitterwitha2400Hzfrequencysignal.
Therangeofthemodulateddigitalsignalisabout1milliampere(0.5mAaroundtheanalogsignalofthe
measure).
Thedatatransferparametersareimposedbythetechnologyandarespecifiedintheprotocolasastandard:
Datatransferrate:1200Bps.
Quantityofstartbits:1.
Quantityofdatabits:8.
Parity:odd.
Quantityofstopbits:1.

Whenaperipheral(aprogrammablelogiccontroller,acomputer,amobileterminal)wishestoexchangedata
withameasurementdeviceincompliancewiththeHARTprotocol,itwillneedtheservicesofanembeddedor
externalHARTMODEMtomodulateanddemodulatethedata.
Fromtheterminaltothesensor,theHARTmodemmodulatesthedatareceivedfromthecommunicationport.
Thenitaddsthissignaltotheanalogicalsignalofthemeasure,tobuildthe420mAcompositesignal.
Fromthetransducertotheterminal,theHARTmodemextractsthemodulatedsignalfromthe420mA

compositesignalanddemodulatesit.Thenitsendsthedatatothecommunicationport.
HARTMODEMLocallinkDirectConnectionToAPeripheral

ToconnectlocallyacomputerandadevicebyusingaseriallinkandanexternalHARTmodemforinstance,
itisenoughtoconnectdirectlythecommunicationportofthecomputertothecommunicationportofthe
modem.
TheHARTmodemsareavailablewithvariousinterfaces:RS232serialport,USB,WirelessHART,
BlueToothandmore.
Neverthelessasfarasweareconcerned,therearestillmanyprogrammablelogiccontrollersandmeasurement
devicesexchangingdatathroughaRS232seriallink.
HartModemRemoteLinkWithAVirtualCommunicationSerialPort
Anautomationengineer,aninstrumentationengineerorauserarenotalwaysclosetothemeasurementsensor
theywantaccessto.
Thetechnicianwhomaintainsthedevicecanbehundredsorthousandskilometersfarawaythetransducer.

Onesolutionistousethevirtualcommunicationporttechnology.
Thisconsistininstallingavirtualserialcommunicationportclientmanager(thesoftwareeVcomfor
instance)onthemachinewheretheinstrumentationsoftwareruns.
Thevirtualcommunicationserialportservercanbeaprogrammablelogiccontroller(aPLC,arouteroran
internetswitchprovidingthisfunction.
Themanageremulatesallthesignalshardwareandsoftwareoftheserialportofthemachineused
bytheinstrumentationsoftware.
UsingtheTELNETprotocol,thepilotofthevirtualserialportredirectsthesesignalsoverthe
EthernetnetworkstowardstheserialportserveraddressedwithanIP.
Thevirtualcommunicationportservercanbeaprogrammablelogiccontroller,arouteroraswitch,for
instance,providingthisfunctionality.
TheserverwillusethedatareceivedoverEthernettobuildthehardwareandsoftwaresignalsto
sendtotheserialportoftheHARTmodem.Then,themodemwillmodulatethedataoftherequest,

andwilladdthismodulatedsignaltotheanalogsignalofthemeasure.Finally,theresultisa420mA
currentloopcompositesignal.
Next,thesensorwillcomputethedataoftherequestandwillsendtheanswerbackwards.
ThistechnologyiscompatiblewithallthemediausingtheEthernetprotocols:thecablednetworks(copper,
optical),thewirelessnetworks(wifi,bluetooth,radiomodems),themobilenetworks(GPRS,3G)andsoon.
HARTMODEMCabling,WiringAndConnectingBasics

Internally,theHARTmodemusesadigitalanalogicalconverter(DAC)workingwiththevoltagetoreadand
writethedatatransferredoverthe420mAcurrentloop.
Consequently,whentheHARTmodemneedstoreaddatafromthetransducer,thecurrentofthe420mA
loophastobeconvertedintovoltagebythesystem.
AndwhentheHARTmodemneedstowritedataintothetransducer,thevoltagehastobeconvertedinto
currentbythesystem.
Todothat,theHARTprotocolstandardprescribestoinserta230to1100resistorinthe420mA
currentloopofthemeasurementsensor.
Tobeabletoadjustcorrectlythevalueoftheresistor,itisnecessarytoknowtheglobalresistivityofthe
420mAloop(whichdependsonthecablefeatures,onitslengthwhichcanexceed1000meters,andonthe
networktopologyaccordingtothequantityofdevices).
Itistonotethatinsomeparticularcircumstances,tokeepagoodqualityinthecommunicationbetweenthe
transducerandtheHARTmodem,themeasurementresistorvaluecanbelowerthantheminimumvalue
prescribedbytheHARTprotocolspecifications(ie.lessthan230).

BasicElectricalDrawing

Thisexampleofdrawingiscomposedoftwo420mAcurrentloops.
Eachofthecurrentloopissuppliedwitha24VDCpowerline,whichisacommonlowvoltagepowersupply
intheelectricalcabinetsinstalledintheEuropeanfactories.
(Itcouldbeanyotherlowvoltagedirectcurrent,suchasa48VDCpowersupplyforinstance,accordingtothe
countryandthecommonusages.)
Eachofthesecurrentloopscontains:
One420mAPLCanalogicalinput(called"%IWx").
OneHARTsensoranditstransmitterincludinga420mAconverter.
("Q"meansaflowsensorwhile"L"meansalevelsensor).
OneloadresistordedicatedtotheHARTmodemconnection.
Inthisexample,theHARTmodemisconnectedtothecurrentloopontheleft,paralleltoits250ohmsload
resistor.
TheoutgoingHARTmodemRS232seriallinecanbeconnectedtoapersonalcomputer,toacontrollerorto
anyotherHARTcompliantdevice.
TheloadresistordedicatedtoaHARTmodemintheloopontherightiswired,butnonemodemisconnected.
Whetherapermanentconnectionisnotnecessary,orwhetherthereisonlyasingleHARTmodemin
ordertooperatetheconfiguration,toreadandwritetheparametersortodiagnoseananalogicalsensor,
onlyconnecttheHARTmodemaccordingtothedrawing,operatethejob,thendisconnecttheHART
modemfromthefirstcurrentloopandconnectittothesecondone.

Oncealloperationshavebeendone,itispossibletodisconnectthemodemfromthebothloops,letting
theloadresistorswiredinsituation(thisavoidstoopenthelinebeforeusingtheHARTmodemagain).
WhethertheHARTmodemmustbepermanentlyconnected(tobeuseremotelyforinstance),theHART
modemstaycontinuouslyconnectedtotheloopsitisneeded.
Itistonoticethat,accordingtoallwhichconcernsanalogicalsensorsandanalogicalmeasuring,itisnecessary
totakecareofthepowersupplyquality.
Itisbettertouseaverystableisolatedpowersupply(thebetterchoicebeingaswitchedmodepowersupply
SMPS),inadditiontotheonesusedcommonlyforthedigitalinputsandoutputs,orforsomeotherdevices.
Thisadditionalpowersupplyshouldbeexclusivelydedicatedtotheanalogicalsensorsandtoalltheother
measuringdevices.

Itisalsonecessarytocheckwhetherthe420mAPLCanalogicalinputsaregalvanicisolatedornot.
Actually,foreconomicalreasons,andalthoughitisnotlogical,somelowcostprogrammablelogiccontrollers
provide420mAanalogicalinputswhicharenotisolated,withcommonconnectionsattheincomingoratthe
outgoingoftheembeddeddigitalanalogicalconverters(DAC).
First,thatimpliesthatisnotpossibletoinserttwononisolatedanalogicalinputsseriallyinthesamecurrent
loop.
Second,thatimplies(inrelationwiththefirstimplicationabove)that,inordertouseeachofthenonisolated
420mAanalogicalinputsinsidedifferentloops,itisnotpossibletoinsertthemanywhere.
WhetherthecommonconnectionistheoutgoingpointoftheDAC,suchasintheillustrationabove,the
commonconnectionofbothanalogicalinputshastobeconnectedtothe"0VDC"(ortothe"")ofthe
powersupply.
Theothercomponentsanddeviceshavetobeconnectedseriallyupstreamintheirrespectivecurrent
loop(thatistowardthe"+"orthe"+24VDC"ofthepowersupply).
WhetherthecommonconnectionistheincomingpointoftheDAC,thecommonconnectionofboth
analogicalinputshastobeconnectedtothe"+24VDC"(orthe"+")ofthepowersupply.
Theothercomponentsanddeviceshavetobeconnectedseriallydownstreamintheirrespectivecurrent
loop(thatistowardthe""orthe"0VDC"ofthepowersupply).

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