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STEP 7 V5.4 engineering tool

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THE latest version of the S7 engineering tool STEP 7 5.4 has been released.

STEP 7 is the universal programming software for configuring and programming SIMATIC controllers.

Available from Siemens Ltd , the software supports the user throughout all phases of automation solutions - from the design and implementation stage through to plant monitoring and failure diagnostics.

STEP 7 contains numerous tools and functions for the most varied tasks in an automation project.

The programming languages LAD, FBD and STL meet the international IEC 61131-3 standard.

Features include:

* Access protection on projects: Protected projects can be opened by authorised users only

* CAx-Data Export/Import for CAx Systems with XML format (such as for CAD- or CAE-Systems)

* Identification data can be written to hardware modules

* PROFINET IO (Ethernet): Real Time functionality increased.

Access Protection

Projects can now be protected with full username and password user management. This does require the additional option SIMATIC Logon V1.3 to provide the user management.

Users can then be assigned different roles and rights for individual projects.

Incorporated into the access protection is a change log. This log records which users logged into the project as well as actions such us saving a new project version, uploading and downloading to the plc.

CAx Data Export/Import

With STEP 7 V5.4 users can export stations in a format that is understood by CAx systems, where they can be processed further.

Similarly, users can also export station data from a compatible CAx system and import them into a station in an STEP 7 project.

In this sense, "CAx" stands for CAD, CAE, E-CAD and E-CAE and refers to the data used in these special programs. This feature saves users from having to enter the same data twice.

Module identification

Identification and maintenance (I&M) functions are information functions that users can use to retrieve information about a device such as the manufacturer, version, configuration, location and diagnostics.

Identification data is information on the module. Some of this information may also be printed on the module housing.

This information can be read by the module diagnostics function in STEP 7.

The maintenance data is plant-dependent information such as the Plant ID, Location ID, installation data and any comments. Maintenance data can now also be written to the module online.

Profinet I/O

PROFINET is the industrial automation standard based on Ethernet specified by the international Profibus organisation.

Step 7 5.4 includes several improvements for engineering Profinet systems:

* Mass engineering through improved copying of Profinet I/O devices

* New Profinet Isochronous Real Time (IRT) topology editor for creation of systems synchronised via Profinet

* Online/Offline comparison of Profinet I/O systems

* Support for the new CP1616 Profinet IRT PC card.

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