Consider this when using multi-vendor IO-Link solutions

The IO-Link consortium allows for multiple master connections from DIN rail slice IP20 solutions to IP67 ports.  As usage of IO-Link has grown dramatically over the last two years and adoption of multi-vendor solutions continues to rise, there will be a point where you may encounter an alternate type of IO-Link connection for IP67 masters and devices in the market.

The specification allows for a wide variety of connectors and conductors for the IO-Link master/slave connection specifically calling out M5, M8 & M12 connectors.  The default port and pin configuration for an IO-Link master port is the M12 A-coded connection with port type A.  In IO-Link port A, the power for the IO-Link slave device is provided entirely by the pins 1&3 similar to a standard proximity sensor according to IEC 61076-2-101.  This is the most common port type in use today and is found on the widest variety of sensors and slave devices.

An alternate port type is available, IO-Link Port B, to provide galvanically isolated power to the IO-Link slave device.  In this configuration a second power supply can be added for isolated control power.  It is not widely adapted in IO-Link slave devices today but can be found in some products where this is an application requirement.  If a master or device has a port type B it must be clearly labelled on the product per the specification.


If there is not a port type identified on the device then it is assumed to be a port A type device as it is the default configuration.  Balluff IO-Link masters and devices are mostly of the type port A.  Check out Balluff’s IO-Link offering.


Leave a Reply