(19)
(11)EP 3 220 583 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
08.05.2019 Bulletin 2019/19

(21)Application number: 17161040.5

(22)Date of filing:  15.03.2017
(51)Int. Cl.: 
H04L 12/40  (2006.01)
G06F 13/20  (2006.01)
G06F 13/10  (2006.01)
G06F 13/40  (2006.01)

(54)

COMMUNICATIONS BUS LINE ISOLATOR

KOMMUNIKATIONSBUSLEITUNGSISOLATOR

ISOLATEUR DE LIGNE DE BUS DE COMMUNICATION


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 16.03.2016 US 201615071836

(43)Date of publication of application:
20.09.2017 Bulletin 2017/38

(73)Proprietor: Honeywell International Inc.
Morris Plains, NJ 07950 (US)

(72)Inventor:
  • HOSEY, Mark Alexander
    Morris Plains, NJ New Jersey 07950 (US)

(74)Representative: Houghton, Mark Phillip 
Patent Outsourcing Limited 1 King Street
Bakewell, Derbyshire DE45 1DZ
Bakewell, Derbyshire DE45 1DZ (GB)


(56)References cited: : 
EP-A2- 2 760 165
US-A- 5 999 389
US-A- 5 933 591
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    FIELD



    [0001] The present invention relates generally to communications buses. More particularly, the present invention relates to a communications bus line isolator.

    BACKGROUND



    [0002] Systems are known that use a single communications bus to transmit communications signals between a control panel and remote peripheral devices. A communications bus is a single route or channel through which data is communicated according to a communications protocol, such as a four wire RS485 bus. However, such systems can be rendered inoperable when a fault develops or is induced by deliberate interference or tampering on the communications bus wiring or on a bus interface of one of the peripheral devices. For example, on a four wire RS485 bus, connecting the A, B, power, or ground connections improperly will prevent a control panel from receiving communications signals indicative of polling events from peripheral devices as well as any other data signals transmitted between the control panel and peripheral devices connected to the bus. Hence, in this document - faults on or tampering or interference with - a communications bus is the description given to the detection of out of specification signals on that communications bus. An out of specification signal is a condition where one or more signals on the bus do not fall within the maximum and minimum thresholds for signals as defined by the communications protocol defining the bus architecture.

    [0003] Although a communications bus is a single unit, it is to be understood that internal communications bus cabling, as used herein, can include the portion of the bus cabling within a control panel enclosure, and that external communications bus cabling, as used herein, can include the portion of the bus cabling that extends outside of the control panel enclosure. A control panel can be connected to one or more of an Ethernet module, a GSM/GPRS module, a modem, or other communications device that can be used to report an alarm, fault, or status condition to a remote receiver, such as a reporting station. Typically, each of these communications devices is housed within the control panel enclosure and is connected to the control panel via the internal communications bus cabling. However, the control panel and the communications devices housed within the control panel enclosure can also be connected to peripheral devices, such as keypads and sensors, via external communications bus cabling. In known systems, any fault on or malicious tampering or interference with the external communications bus cabling or peripheral devices attached to the external communications bus cabling can render the entire communications bus, including the internal communications bus cabling, inoperable, thereby preventing the control panel from communicating alarms, faults, or status conditions to a remote receiver via one or more of the communications devices connected to the internal communications bus cabling.

    [0004] FIG. 1 is a block diagram of system 100 that includes a communications bus as known in the art. As seen, the system 100 can include a control panel 110, and one or more communications devices 120 housed within a control panel enclosure 130 and connected to the control panel via internal communications bus cabling 140. Each of the control panel 110 and the communications devices 120 can also be connected to one or more peripheral devices 150 that are located outside of the control panel enclosure 130 via external communications bus cabling 160. As described above, communications between the control panel 110 and the communications devices 120 via the internal bus cabling 140 are vulnerable to faults on or tampering or interference with the external bus cabling 160 and the peripheral devices 150.

    [0005] Some systems have been developed to overcome the susceptibility to faults on or tampering or interference with known communications buses. For example, some control panels include a communications device housed within the control panel enclosure and connected to a communications bus, as described above, as well as a dedicated communications device, such as a POTS telecommunications device or modem, connected directly to the control panel and not via the communications bus. Accordingly, when tampering occurs on the external cabling of the communications bus, thereby rendering communications between the control panel and the communications devices connected to the communications bus inoperable, the control panel can still communicate via the dedicated communications device.

    [0006] Unfortunately, not all control panels include or can support a dedicated communications device, such as a modem. For example, some control panels do not have access to a land line telephone connection to operate with an onboard modem. Accordingly, such control panels remain susceptible to faults on or tampering or interference with a communications bus, and systems that include such control panels may become incapable of reporting alarm, fault, or status conditions, thereby making such systems incapable of protecting, monitoring, and controlling an associated monitored region in the manner expected by a user.

    [0007] Other systems that have been developed to overcome the susceptibility to faults on or tampering or interference with known communications buses include control panels that include two separate communications buses: one communications bus for connecting the control panel to devices internal to the control panel enclosure and another communications bus for connecting the control panel to devices external to the control panel enclosure. Undesirably, such systems require additional control panel resources, such as a second microprocessor, UART, memory device, and the like, as well as software and other components to support a second bus interface. Further there is a need for provide a system including a communications bus isolator that, preferably automatically, isolates communications on a first, e.g. internal, side of that communications bus from the second, e.g. external side of that communications bus when signals form the second side of that bus are out of specification for the communications defining the bus (i.e. its architecture and thus its parameters of operation). Furthermore there is a need for provide means to isolate first and second sides of a communications bus when out of specification signals are detected.

    [0008] Patent document EP2760165A2 describes systems for helping identify faults on a bus, as well as to determine the topology of a bus network. The system includes a bus interface for connecting to a bus and a switch coupled to the bus interface, the switch configured to alternate between an open state and a closed state. The system is connected to the bus via the bus interface when the switch is in the closed state, and the system is disconnected from the bus via the bus interface when the switch is in the open state.

    [0009] Patent document US5933591A describes apparatus for isolating a fault on a local area network. A metallic bridge is operable to join a first local area network with a second local area network. Processor cards are deployed to provide redundant protection. A processor card is attached to LAN A and a processor card is attached to LAN B. In the event of a single point of failure in either the processor cards or the local area network media or a power failure, the metallic bridge opens and separates the local area networks. Operation will continue on the operable local area network.

    [0010] In view of the above, there is a continuing, ongoing need for improved systems and methods.

    SUMMARY



    [0011] The present invention in its various aspects is as set out in the appended claims.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0012] 

    FIG. 1 is a block diagram of system that includes a communications bus as known in the art;

    FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a system that includes a communications bus and a communications bus line isolator in accordance with disclosed embodiments;

    FIG. 3 is a block diagram of a system that includes a communications bus and a communications bus line isolator in accordance with disclosed embodiments;

    FIG. 4 is a block diagram of a system that includes a communications bus and internal and external communications bus line isolators in accordance with disclosed embodiments; and

    FIG. 5 is a block diagram of a system that includes a communications bus and internal and external communications bus line isolators in accordance with disclosed embodiments. The present invention in its various aspects is as set out in the appended claims.


    DETAILED DESCRIPTION



    [0013] While this invention is susceptible of an embodiment in many different forms, there are shown in the drawings and will be described herein in detail specific embodiments thereof with the understanding that the present disclosure is to be considered as an exemplification of the principles of the invention. It is not intended to limit the invention to the specific illustrated embodiments.

    [0014] In the present invention out of specification signals which are taken to define the condition of faults on or tampering or interference with include a floating voltage on an input indicative of no connection being present. Thus, the present invention enables automatic isolation of unused external communications bus cabling. This isolates the bus from potential noise generated by the possibility of oscillations in floating voltage lines, such as induced by the 50Hz or 60Hz of mains electrical supply cabling. Embodiments disclosed herein can include a communications bus line isolator. For example, internal communications bus cabling, to which communications devices or other status reporting peripheral devices housed within a control panel enclosure can be connected, can be isolated from external communications bus cabling. In the present invention, such isolation can be achieved by employing a communications bus repeater that automatically passes data signals from one side of the bus, for example, the internal bus cabling, to the other side of the bus, for example, the external bus cabling, and vice versa. However, the repeater can prevent bus faults on or deliberate interference or tampering with the external bus cabling or peripheral devices connected to the external bus cabling from disabling communications between the control panel and the communications devices or other status reporting peripheral devices connected to the internal bus cabling. The present invention differs from known buffers and repeaters in that out of specification incoming signals, such as from a second side, are not simply brought within the bounds of the specification, such as work and out of specification peak voltage is relayed but at an acceptable, in specification, level but that the repeater of the present invention provides a communications bus isolator which self-isolates the bus on the first, outgoing, side of the bus. In the present invention the second side of the bus may be defined as the side of the bus at which an out of specification signal is detected (such a signal need not necessarily be transient). In the present invention, the first side of the bus may be defined as the side of the bus to which a control panel is connected for controlling slave devices on a second side of the bus. The communications protocol of the communications bus may be a bidirectional protocol. Thus, the communications bus isolator of the present invention is notable in that it need only isolate out of specification signals coming from a second side but not from a first side. This has the advantage, particularly in the context of a control panel that the control panel is isolated from incoming out of specification signals, an example being a short circuit in a fire system in which a control panel may be exposed to otherwise damaging or disruptive excess voltage from the incoming bus if that external buses damaged during the fire. Thus, a control panel may continue to operate effectively at a critical time. The further advantage is that, such as in routine maintenance, the wiring at the centralised control panel point, may be accessed so as to interrogate a number of geographically remote or distributed, such as slave, devices by sending out of specification signals from a central point for the purposes of diagnosis (such as for example performing an electrical insulation check). Thus, out of specification signals may be usefully transferred from a first side to a second side without being blocked.

    [0015] Advantageously, the communications bus line isolator described and disclosed herein can be included in systems and control panels during production or installation or can be retrofitted to existing systems when the need arises to protect the integrity of portions of communications bus cabling. Furthermore, the communications bus line described and disclosed herein advantageously need not be integrated into a control panel or use any additional resources of a control panel outside of what is included in a known control panel.

    [0016] As explained above, the communications bus isolator described and disclosed herein can include a communications bus repeater, and in some embodiments, the communications bus repeater can include a passive transparent communications bus repeater to isolate the internal bus cabling from the external bus cabling. It is be understood that a repeater, as used herein, is a device that passes information or signals without a change of protocol from one set of wires to another set of wires of a communications bus without any discernible transmission or reception delays for the purposes of the communications protocol of the bus. It is also to be understood that a passive repeater, as used herein, is a repeater that carries out the function of a repeater without the help of a microprocessor, memory device, or other devices that enable data buffering or data manipulation. Furthermore, it is to be understood that a transparent repeater, as used herein, can include a device that need not address data signals prior to transfer thereof. Instead, any data signal appearing on a first of a transparent repeater's bus connections appears unmodified (i.e. to the extent that any change is not relevant to the communications protocol) on a second of the transparent repeater's bus connections, whether or not the data signal is intended to be received by a device connected to the bus cabling that is connected to the second of the transparent repeater's bus connections.

    [0017] In some embodiments, a communications bus repeater, for example, a passive transparent communications repeater, can be spliced into a communications bus such that a first side of the repeater is connected to internal communications bus cabling, for example, cabling internal to a control panel enclosure and connected to devices internal to the control panel enclosure, and a second side of the repeater is connected to external communications bus cabling, for example, cabling external to the control panel enclosure and connected to peripheral devices external to the control panel enclosure. In some embodiments, the repeater can be located within the control panel enclosure together with the internal communications bus cabling. Accordingly, both the repeater and the internal bus cabling can be protected from transient interference or tampering that is external to the control panel enclosure. It is to be understood that transient interference or tampering, as used herein, can include inducing a fault on external communications bus cabling that renders the communications bus inoperable, wherein, once induced, the fault is static and unchanging.

    [0018] In some embodiments, the repeater as disclosed and described herein can use voltage transitions to detect and react to the presence of data traffic on the associated communications bus. For example, a predetermined period of time after a voltage transition ceases, that is, after a time out period, the repeater can enter a quiescent listening state during which the repeater isolates the internal bus cabling and external bus cabling from one another. Because any fault induced by a transient interference or tampering gives rise to a single voltage transition, in some embodiments, operation of the internal bus cabling will only be interrupted during the repeater's time out period, after which the internal bus cabling can resume normal operation. Indeed, in the absence of any further voltage transitions, the external bus cabling can be isolated from the internal bus cabling.

    [0019] Contrary to transient interfering or tampering, continuous interfering or tampering, as used herein, can include inducing a fault on external communications bus cabling that renders the communications bus inoperable, wherein the fault includes repeated or continuous interfering or tampering events, such as, for example, voltage transitions. In some embodiments, the repeater as disclosed and described herein can facilitate the control panel detecting the continuous interfering or tampering, and upon such detection, actively disabling or instructing the repeater to actively disable the repeater's external bus cabling receivers. For example, the control panel can detect unsolicited voltage transitions on external bus cabling, for example, activity that is not responsive to any device polling events and that is disrupting communications on internal bus cabling. Responsive to such detection, the control panel can assert or activate an output of the control panel that is dedicated to bus fault isolation and that is connected to the repeater's circuits that enable or disable the repeater's external bus cabling receivers. Accordingly, the control panel can actively switch the receiver off to isolate internal bus cabling from external bus cabling and to give the control panel free and unfettered access to communications devices connected to the internal bus cabling.

    [0020] It is to be understood that the repeater itself can also detect continuous interference and tampering, and upon such detection protect the internal bus cabling from transient interference or tampering as described above. However, the repeater can subsequently protect the internal bus cabling from continuous interference or tampering upon receipt of a signal from the control panel with instructions to disable to the repeater's external bus cabling receivers and thereby isolate the external bus cabling.

    [0021] It is also to be understood that a repeater as described and disclosed herein can be used to protect communications on cabling on either side of the repeater from faults, interference, or tampering on the other side of the repeater. For example, in addition to or as an alternative to a communications bus repeater connected to both internal and external bus cabling as described above and herein, in some embodiments, a communications bus repeater, for example, a passive transparent communications repeater, can be spliced into a communications bus such that a first side of the repeater is connected to a first portion of external communications bus cabling, for example, cabling connected to a first plurality of peripheral devices, and a second side of the repeater is connected to a second portion of external communications bus cabling, for example, cabling connected to a second plurality of peripheral devices. Accordingly, one portion of the external bus cabling connected to one plurality of peripheral devices can be protected from interference or tampering on the other portion of the external bus cabling or the other portion of peripheral devices. It is to be understood that such protection can be transient or continuous as described above and herein. However, when the protection is continuous, the repeater external to the control panel can also be connected to a controller that is subordinate to the control panel, for example, a remote input/output module (RIO), and the subordinate controller can transmit a signal to the repeater external to the control panel to actively disable the external repeater's bus cabling receivers connected to the other portion of the external bus cabling.

    [0022] FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a system 200 that includes a communications bus and a communications bus line isolator in accordance with disclosed embodiments. As seen, the system 200 can include a control panel 210 and one or more communications devices 220 housed within a control panel enclosure 230 and connected via internal communications bus cabling 240. A repeater 215 as disclosed and described herein can also be included within the control panel enclosure 230, and a first side of the repeater 215 can be connected to the internal bus cabling 240.

    [0023] A second side of the repeater 215 can be connected to external communications bus cabling 260, which can also be connected to one or more peripheral devices 250 that are located outside of the control panel enclosure 230. Each of the control panel 210 and the communications devices 220 can communicate with the peripheral devices 250 via the repeater 215. However, when the repeater 215 detects a transient fault on or transient tampering or interference with the external bus cabling 260 or one of the peripheral devices 250, the repeater 215 can isolate the external bus cabling 260 from the internal bus cabling 240, thereby protecting the internal bus cabling 240 from the transient faults or transient tampering or interference.

    [0024] FIG. 3 is a block diagram of another system 300 that includes a communications bus and a communications bus line isolator in accordance with disclosed embodiments. As seen, the system 300 can include a control panel 310 and one or more communications devices 320 housed within a control panel enclosure 330 and connected via internal communications bus cabling 340. A repeater 315 as disclosed and described herein can also be included within the control panel enclosure 330, and a first side of the repeater 315 can be connected to the internal bus cabling 340. As seen, the repeater 315 can also be connected to the control panel 310 via a communications line 311, a control panel output 312 that is dedicated to bus fault isolation, and circuits 316 in the repeater 315 that enable or disable external bus cabling receivers 317 of the repeater 315.

    [0025] A second side of the repeater 315 can be connected to external communications bus cabling 360 via the external bus cabling receivers 317, and the external bus cabling 360 can also be connected to one or more peripheral devices 350 that are located outside of the control panel enclosure 330. Each of the control panel 310 and the communications devices 320 can communicate with the peripheral devices 350 via the repeater 315. However, when the repeater 315 detects any fault on or tampering or interference with the external bus cabling 360 or one of the peripheral devices 350, the repeater 315 can isolate the external bus cabling 360 from the internal bus cabling 340, thereby protecting the internal bus cabling 340 from transient faults or transient tampering or interference. Moreover, when the control panel 310 detects a continuous fault on or continuous tampering or interference with the external bus cabling 360 or one of the peripheral devices 350, the control panel 310 can transmit a signal to the repeater 315 via the control panel output 312, the communications line 311, and the circuits 316 of the repeater 315 instructing the repeater 315 to disable the external bus cabling receivers 317 of the repeater 315, thereby protecting the internal bus cabling 340 from the continuous fault or continuous tampering or interference.

    [0026] FIG. 4 is a block diagram of a system 400 that is similar to the system 200 of FIG. 2 except that the system 400 also includes an external repeater 465 such that a first side of the repeater 465 is connected to a first portion of external communications bus cabling 460, which is connected to a first plurality of peripheral devices 450 located outside of the control panel enclosure 430, and a second side of the repeater 465 is connected to a second portion of external communications bus cabling 462, which is connected to a second plurality of peripheral devices 452 located outside of the control panel enclosure 430. Each of the control panel 410, communication devices 420 housed within the control panel enclosure 430, internal repeater 415, and the first plurality of peripheral devices 450 can communicate with each of the second plurality of peripheral devices 452 via the repeater 465. However, when the repeater 465 detects a transient fault or transient tampering or interference with the second portion of external bus cabling 462 or one of the second plurality of peripheral devices 452, the repeater 465 can isolate the second portion of external bus cabling 462 from the first portion of external bus cabling 460, thereby protecting the first portion of external bus cabling 460 from the transient fault or transient tampering or interference.

    [0027] Finally, FIG. 5 is a block diagram of a system 500 that is similar to the system 300 of FIG. 3 except that the system 500 also includes an external repeater 565 such that a first side of the repeater 565 is connected to a first portion of external communications bus cabling 560, which is connected to a first plurality of peripheral devices 550 located outside of the control panel enclosure 530, and a second side of the repeater 565 is connected to a second portion of external communications bus cabling 562, which is connected to a second plurality of peripheral devices 552 located outside of the control panel enclosure 530. As seen in FIG. 5, the repeater 565 can also be connected to a subordinate controller 570 via a communications line 571, a controller output 572 that is dedicated to bus fault isolation, and circuits 566 in the repeater 565 that enable or disable external bus cabling receivers 567 of the repeater 565.

    [0028] Each of the control panel 510, communication devices 520 housed within the control panel enclosure 530, internal repeater 515, and the first plurality of peripheral devices 550 can communicate with each of the second plurality of peripheral devices 552 via the repeater 565. However, when the repeater 565 detects any fault or tampering or interference with the second portion of external bus cabling 562 or one of the second plurality of peripheral devices 552, the repeater 565 can isolate the second portion of external bus cabling 562 from the first portion of external bus cabling 560, thereby protecting the first portion of external bus cabling 560 from transient faults or transient tampering or interference. Moreover, when the subordinate controller 570 detects a continuous fault on or continuous tampering or interference with the second portion of external bus cabling 562 or one of the second plurality of peripheral devices 552, the controller 570 can transmit a signal to the repeater 565 via the controller output 572, the communications line 571, and the circuits 566 of the repeater 565 instructing the repeater 565 to disable the external bus cabling receivers 567 of the repeater 565, thereby second plurality of peripheral devices 552, the controller 570 can transmit a signal to the repeater 565 via the controller output 572, the communications line 571, and the circuits 566 of the repeater 565 instructing the repeater 565 to disable the external bus cabling receivers 567 of the repeater 565, thereby protecting the first portion of external bus cabling 560 from the continuous fault or continuous tampering or interference.

    [0029] Although a few embodiments have been described in detail above, other modifications are possible. For example, the logic flows described above do not require the particular order described, or sequential order, to achieve desirable results. Other steps may be provided, or steps may be eliminated, from the described flows, and other components may be added to, or removed from, the described systems. Other embodiments may be within the scope of the invention.

    [0030] A floating voltage is a voltage that is not connected by any conducting path (including resistors) to ground or a voltage reference point. From the foregoing, it will be observed that numerous variations and modifications may be effected without departing from the scope of the invention, as claimed.


    Claims

    1. A system comprising:

    a first communications bus isolator (565); and

    a subordinate controller (570;

    wherein a first side of the first communications bus isolator is coupled to a first portion of external communications bus cabling (560),

    wherein the first portion of the external communications bus cabling is coupled to a first plurality of peripheral devices (510, 520, 550),

    wherein a second side of the first communications bus isolator is coupled, via external bus cabling receivers (567) on the second side of the first communication bus isolator, to a second portion of the external communications bus cabling (562),

    wherein the second portion of the external communications bus cabling is coupled to a second plurality of peripheral devices (552),

    wherein the subordinate controller (570) is coupled to the first communications bus isolator (565) via a dedicated fault bus isolation output (572) of the subordinate controller using a communications line (571) that is different than the first portion of the external communications bus cabling and the second portion of the external communications bus cabling,

    wherein the subordinate controller is adapted to detect a fault on the second portion of the external communications bus cabling (562) or on at least one of the second plurality of peripheral devices (552) and transmit, via the dedicated fault bus isolation output of the subordinate controller and the communications line, a first signal indicative of the fault to the first communications bus isolator,

    wherein the first communications bus isolator is adapted to isolate the first portion of the external communications bus cabling from the second portion of the external communications bus cabling by actively disabling the external bus cabling receivers on the second side of the first communications bus isolator when the first communications bus isolator receives the first signal from the subordinate controller,

    wherein the first portion of the external communications bus cabling and the second portion of the external communications bus cabling are located outside of a control panel enclosure (530),

    wherein the first communications bus isolator includes a communications bus repeater, and

    wherein the communications bus repeater is adapted to automatically pass second signals between the first portion of the external communications bus cabling and the second portion of the external communications bus cabling when detection of the fault on the second portion of the external communications bus cabling or the at least one of the second plurality of peripheral devices is absent.


     
    2. The system of claim 1 wherein the communications bus repeater includes a passive transparent communications bus repeater.
     
    3. The system of claim 1 wherein each of the first communications bus isolator (565), the first plurality of peripheral devices (550), and the second plurality of peripheral devices (552) is located outside of the control panel enclosure (530).
     
    4. The system of claim 1 wherein the first plurality of peripheral devices includes a control panel (510), and wherein the first side of the first communications bus isolator (565) is coupled to the control panel via internal communications bus cabling (540) housed within the control panel enclosure (530).
     
    5. The system of claim 4 wherein each of the control panel (510) and the first communications bus isolator (565) is housed within the control panel enclosure (530).
     
    6. The system of claim 1 further comprising:

    a second communications bus isolator (515),

    wherein a first side of the second communications bus isolator is coupled to internal communications bus cabling (540),

    wherein a second side of the second communications bus isolator is coupled to the first portion of the external communications bus cabling (560), and

    wherein the second communications bus isolator and the internal communications bus cabling are housed within the control panel enclosure (530).


     
    7. The system of claim 1 wherein the subordinate controller (570) is adapted to detect a voltage transition indicative of the fault on the second portion of the external communications bus cabling (562) or the at least one of the second plurality of peripheral devices (552).
     


    Ansprüche

    1. System, umfassend:

    einen ersten Kommunikationsbusisolator (565); und

    eine untergeordnete Steuerung (570);

    wobei eine erste Seite des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators an einen ersten Abschnitt einer externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (560) gekoppelt ist,

    wobei der erste Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung an eine erste Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (510, 520, 550) gekoppelt ist,

    wobei eine zweite Seite des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators über externe Busverkabelungsempfänger (567) an der zweiten Seite des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators an einen zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (562) gekoppelt ist,

    wobei der zweite Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung an eine zweite Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (552) gekoppelt ist,

    wobei die untergeordnete Steuerung (570) an den ersten Kommunikationsbusisolator (565) über einen dedizierten Fehlerbusisolationsausgang (572) der untergeordneten Steuerung unter Verwendung einer Kommunikationsleitung (571), die von dem ersten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung und dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung verschieden ist, gekoppelt ist,

    wobei die untergeordnete Steuerung angepasst ist, einen Fehler an dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (562) oder an mindestens einer der zweiten Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (552) zu detektieren und ein erstes Signal, das den Fehler angibt, über den dedizierten Fehlerbusisolationsausgang der untergeordneten Steuerung und der Kommunikationsleitung an den ersten Kommunikationsbusisolator zu übertragen,

    wobei der erste Kommunikationsbusisolator angepasst ist, den ersten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung von dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung durch aktives Deaktivieren der externen Busverkabelungsempfänger an der zweiten Seite des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators zu isolieren, wenn der erste Kommunikationsbusisolator das erste Signal von der untergeordneten Steuerung empfängt,

    wobei der erste Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung und der zweite Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung außerhalb eines Steuertafelgehäuses (530) angeordnet sind,

    wobei der erste Kommunikationsbusisolator einen Kommunikationsbusrepeater enthält und

    wobei der Kommunikationsbusrepeater angepasst ist, automatisch zweite Signale zwischen dem ersten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung und dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung weiterzuleiten, wenn eine Detektion des Fehlers an dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung oder dem mindestens einen der zweiten Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen nicht vorliegt.


     
    2. System nach Anspruch 1, wobei der Kommunikationsbusrepeater einen passiven transparenten Kommunikationsbusrepeater enthält.
     
    3. System nach Anspruch 1, wobei sämtliche des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators (565), der ersten Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (550) und der zweiten Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (552) außerhalb des Steuertafelgehäuses (530) angeordnet sind.
     
    4. System nach Anspruch 1, wobei die erste Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen eine Steuertafel (510) enthält und wobei die erste Seite des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators (565) über eine interne Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (540), die in dem Steuertafelgehäuse (530) untergebracht ist, an die Steuertafel gekoppelt ist.
     
    5. System nach Anspruch 4, wobei sämtliche der Steuertafel (510) und des ersten Kommunikationsbusisolators (565) in dem Steuertafelgehäuse (530) untergebracht sind.
     
    6. System nach Anspruch 1, ferner umfassend:

    einen zweiten Kommunikationsbusisolator (515),

    wobei eine erste Seite des zweiten Kommunikationsbusisolators an eine interne Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (540) gekoppelt ist,

    wobei eine zweite Seite des zweiten Kommunikationsbusisolators an den ersten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (560) gekoppelt ist und

    wobei der zweite Kommunikationsbusisolator und die interne Kommunikationsbusverkabelung in dem Steuertafelgehäuse (530) untergebracht sind.


     
    7. System nach Anspruch 1, wobei die untergeordnete Steuerung (570) angepasst ist, einen Spannungsübergang zu detektieren, der den Fehler an dem zweiten Abschnitt der externen Kommunikationsbusverkabelung (562) oder der mindestens einen der zweiten Vielzahl von peripheren Vorrichtungen (552) angibt.
     


    Revendications

    1. Système, comprenant :

    un premier isolateur de bus de communication (565) ; et

    un contrôleur subordonné (570) ;

    un premier côté du premier isolateur de bus de communication étant couplé à un premier tronçon d'un câblage de bus de communication externe (560),

    le premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe étant couplé à une première pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (510, 520, 550),

    un deuxième côté du premier isolateur de bus de communication étant couplé, par le biais de récepteurs (567) de câblage de bus externe du deuxième côté du premier isolateur de bus de communication, à un deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe (562),

    le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe étant couplé à une deuxième pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (552),

    le contrôleur subordonné (570) étant couplé au premier isolateur de bus de communication (565) par le biais d'une sortie d'isolement sur défaut de bus dédiée (572) du contrôleur subordonné au moyen d'une ligne de communication (571) différente du premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe et du deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe,

    le contrôleur subordonné étant adapté à détecter un défaut sur le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe (562) ou sur au moins un de la deuxième pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (552) et transmettre, par le biais de la sortie d'isolement sur défaut de bus dédiée du contrôleur subordonné et de la ligne de communication, un premier signal indiquant le défaut au premier isolateur de bus de communication,

    le premier isolateur de bus de communication étant adapté à isoler le premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe vis-à-vis du deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe en inhibant activement les récepteurs de câblage de bus externe du deuxième côté du premier isolateur de bus de communication lorsque le premier isolateur de bus de communication reçoit le premier signal en provenance du contrôleur subordonné,

    le premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe et le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe étant situés hors d'une enceinte (530) de panneau de commande,

    le premier isolateur de bus de communication comportant un répéteur de bus de communication, et

    le répéteur de bus de communication étant adapté à laisser automatiquement passer des deuxièmes signaux entre le premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe et le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe en l'absence d'une détection du défaut sur le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe ou l'au moins un de la deuxième pluralité de dispositifs périphériques.


     
    2. Système selon la revendication 1, dans lequel le répéteur de bus de communication comporte un répéteur de bus de communication transparent passif.
     
    3. Système selon la revendication 1, dans lequel chacun du premier isolateur de bus de communication (565), de la première pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (550) et de la deuxième pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (552) est situé hors de l'enceinte (530) de panneau de commande.
     
    4. Système selon la revendication 1, dans lequel la première pluralité de dispositifs périphériques comporte un panneau de commande (510), et dans lequel le premier côté du premier isolateur de bus de communication (565) est couplé au panneau de commande par le biais d'un câblage de bus de communication interne (540) logé dans l'enceinte (530) de panneau de commande.
     
    5. Système selon la revendication 4, dans lequel chacun du panneau de commande (510) et du premier isolateur de bus de communication (565) est logé dans l'enceinte (530) de panneau de commande.
     
    6. Système selon la revendication 1, comprenant en outre :

    un deuxième isolateur de bus de communication (515),

    un premier côté du deuxième isolateur de bus de communication étant couplé à un câblage de bus de communication interne (540),

    un deuxième côté du deuxième isolateur de bus de communication étant couplé au premier tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe (560), et

    le deuxième isolateur de bus de communication et le câblage de bus de communication interne étant logés dans l'enceinte (530) de panneau de commande.


     
    7. Système selon la revendication 1, dans lequel le contrôleur subordonné (570) est adapté à détecter une transition de tension indiquant le défaut sur le deuxième tronçon du câblage de bus de communication externe (562) ou l'au moins un de la deuxième pluralité de dispositifs périphériques (552).
     




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    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



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    Patent documents cited in the description