As a communications equipment manufacturer, Comtrol often suggests applicable products for a customer’s environment based on features the products have. However, this is a two way street. The proper selection of an Ethernet switch begins with classification of the area in which your product will be placed; only next does it become important to select a switch that fits your environment.
Step 1 – Classify the area in which your network equipment will be located.
Depending on how critical your application is, this can be done with various levels of intensity. Some users may choose a standardized measure, such as the MICE classification system (Mechanical, Ingress, Climactic Chemicals, Electromagnetic) to ensure an accurate and objective description in every area. Others may rely on individual objective measurements such as temperature (°F/°C), moisture (% humidity), and known acceleration rates. Finally, others may elect for a simpler, subjective system such as “Hot/Cold” or “smooth/heavy vibration.”
Step 2 – Select an Ethernet switch that meets the requirements of the area it will be located.
Now that the environment has been classified, the next step is to find an Ethernet switch, or set of Ethernet switches that meets or exceeds each of the characteristics defined by the environment. By listing environmental specifications on every Comtrol RocketLinx Ethernet switch, this step can be as easy as completing a check list.
Furthermore, the “-XT” designation that follows many Comtrol products signifies a wide operating temperature range – encompassing both hot (+75°C) and cold (-40°C). If temperature is a concern, take a look at Comtrol’s “-XT” product line.
Step 3 – Make sure all switch accessories are also fit to perform in the classified area.
“A system is only as strong as its weakest component.”
Depending on the environment, a switch that is installed and the accessories that are involved can vary widely. The most common accessories to an industrial Ethernet switch include power supplies (AC – DC), and SFP modules for fiber-optic connectivity. In reference to the above quote, it is equally important to make sure each accessory matches or exceeds the environmental requirements of every other component and the environment as a whole.
Whether you are designing a system from the ground up, or just installing a few more Ethernet devices in a less-than-ideal area, Comtrol is happy to apply our product lines to fit each of your needs. With a complete listing of environmental specifications on each of our products and knowledge of relevant applications, contact your Comtrol sales rep today!
For questions or more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 763.957.6000.