To capture the EtherCAT traffic, EC-Monitor supports a variety of different Ethernet Test Access Points (TAP). These can be special real-time optimized TAPs with minimal propagation delay and extended diagnostic options, or simple 100MBit/s Ethernet switches. The only requirement is that the input (RX) and output (TX) traffic is forwarded to the EC-Monitor via a common up-link port.
The Ethernet TAP device can be inserted in the network between the EtherCAT master and slaves or, if this is not possible, between two slaves. The position of the Ethernet TAP is detected automatically and the EtherCAT traffic is processed accordingly.
A generic 100MBit/s Ethernet switch with at least 3 ports can be used with EC-Monitor. The propagation delay can be up to 150 μs per port and should therefore only be used for slower cycle times.
The Beckhoff ET2000 comes with propagation delay below 1 μs, a high-precision timestamp and extended frame error detection capabilities.
The Dualcomm ETAP-1000 has a propagation delay below 1 μs. Since it has no other extended capabilities it can be used as generic Ethernet TAP
The Hilscher netAnalyser comes with propagation delay below 1 μs and it will be detected as generic Ethernet TAP
The ProfiTap ProfiShark devices are USB3.0 based Ethernet TAPs with a propagation delay below 1 μs. Since the devices appear as a virtual Ethernet interface in the operating system they can be used as a generic Ethernet TAP