Due to recent progress in digital control systems, advances in communication methods and improvements in the functionality of modern sensors and controllers have resulted in the development of sophisticated communication systems in the automation, manufacturing, and process environments. The communication systems, called the “fieldbus,” contain hardware, software and protocols for interconnecting field devices used in the plant environment.

At the moment, there are many fieldbuses offered by a diverse range of vendors driven by commercial interests or application-specific motivations. This paper addresses the worldwide attempt to standardize fieldbus protocols in order to allow the implementation of control strategies universally.