General about CANopen in a lift

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Due to the high amount of advantages, the use of standardized fieldbus-systems to interconnect electric components is in the trend. This can be seen in the industrial automation, the automotive industry, the facility-management, etc. Common systems in the faciliy-management are for example: EIB, EHS or LON. In the industrial automation for example CAN, Profibus, Interbus or Ethernet are used. When using a fieldbus-system, not only the choice of the system is important, but also the protocol installed on the system. In the lift-technology CAN and LON have been established. Before releasing the application profile CiA 417, it was not possible to interconnect components from different manufacturers to a whole system. The reason was that each manufacturer implemented his own proprietary protocol.


At the Interlift 2001 in Augsburg, Germany, there were first contacts between the manufacturers of components for the elevator-industry. The goal was to agree to a common standard for the CAN protocol. The first meetings took place at the turn of the year 2001/2002 and it was decided to base the standard on CANopen. CANopen is a higher-layer protocol, created for the industrial automation and has become the standard for can-based communication in Europe. Responsible for CANopen is the users’ and manufacturers’ association called CAN in Automation (CiA). Within the CiA, the Special Interest Group (SIG) Lift Control Systems was founded. Its task was to check the existing CiA profiles, if they can be used for the elevator technology or if they can be extended or modified. In the end, in 2002 the new profile CiA 417 for lift control systems has been created.

The mission of CANopen in Lift Control

The goal of the SIG Lift is the standardization of the components’ protocols, based on CANopen. So components from different manufacturers can be used at the same bus. In addition, it is possible to use a standardized diagnostic tool or to integrate components, which are used in industrial automation.