The term Ethernet generally stands for the IEEE 802.3 specification. The modules are networked within a tree or star structure and are marked according to a 6-byte worldwide and unique identification code (MAC ID). Hubs always send data to and receive data from all nodes whereas switches feature a selective data transmission mode because they administer dynamic lists with IP addresses of all bus nodes. This guarantees that the data is transmitted to the corresponding target address.
Protocols such as TCP/IP, which ensure safe data transmission, are available. The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is based on the IP and is a connection-orientated transfer protocol, comprising error diagnostics and error handling mechanisms. For applications involving industrial data communication, protocols such as Modbus TCP, EtherNet/IP and PROFINET are available.