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Fieldbus System Engineering Guidelines

Fieldbus System Engineering Guidelines

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Published by Islam Hassan

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Published by: Islam Hassan on Aug 04, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Fieldbus devices may be powered either
from the segment (bus), or locally powered,
depending on the device design. If at all
possible field devices should be bus

Revision 2.0

- 18 -

August 2004


Bus-powered devices typically require 10-
30 mA of current at between 9 and 32 volts.

Devices should strive for minimum power
consumption, without negatively impacting
desired functionality.

4.3.1 Polarity

Fieldbus device’s communication signal
shall be polarity insensitive.


Some older FF devices were polarity
sensitive and if installed incorrectly could
cause network problems.

4.3.2 2-Wire

Field devices shall be loop powered from
the host control system. Fieldbus devices
shall work with voltages of 9–32 VDC.


The 9 VDC specified is a minimum: it is
highly desirable that a margin of at least 1 V
(i.e. a minimum of 10 VDC) be maintained
at the field end of the bus. Some devices do
not conform to FF standards and require 11
volts to operate. Any segment designed to
operate below 15 V normally should carry a
warning about additional loads in the
segment documentation. Minimum segment
voltage should always be shown in the
network/segment documentation.

4.3.3 4-Wire

Externally powered devices (e.g. 4-wire
devices) with FOUNDATION fieldbus should
have isolation between external power and
Fieldbus signal inputs.

4.3.4 Short-circuit Protection

Devices should work with 60 mA current
limiting short-circuit protection though a limit
of 40 mA is preferred.


For practical purposes this means all
devices shall draw no more than 50 mA
since approximately 10 mA is needed to
activate the short-circuit protection circuitry.

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