Automation technology for PLCnext Technology

Automation technology for PLCnext Technology

Use our broad portfolio of automation technology to equip your system for the IIoT and Industry 4.0 with PLCnext Technology. Work with your preferred programming languages, whether IEC 61131-3 or high-level languages such as C/C++, C#, or MATLAB® Simulink® in real time. Integrate open-source code and apps, or network with PLCnext Control via cloud connections.

More information

Why you should use automation technology for PLCnext Technology:

  • PLCs with different performance classes and optimized for various fields of application enable ideal adaptation to your automation task
  • Connection to various cloud services such as allows you to analyze your global machine and system data
  • PLCnext Control can be tailored to your relevant application using open source software and apps
  • Open Linux operating system and support for high-level languages including an optimized development environment
  • Tailored extensions of the PLC functionality and modularity of the I/Os enable custom-fit automation systems

New products

Illustration of device and update management
Safety over EtherCAT (FSoE)
Axioline Smart Elements – plug-in analog input and output I/O modules
PLC extension module for safety applications

Device and update management with OPC UA

All devices kept up to date

Due to the growing complexity of automation, it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep software and firmware up to date. With the device and update management system, you can continuously update automation networks and fix security vulnerabilities in a timely manner – and do so independently of the manufacturer using OPC UA.

Main features

  • OPC UA Global Discovery Server integrated
  • Certificate management
  • REST APIs available
  • Available as an app in the PLCnext Store and as Windows software
  • Secure rollouts and updates for PLCnext Engineer projects
  • Manufacturer-independent firmware updates

Your Advantages

  • Provide manufacturer-independent firmware and certificates
  • Ensure cybersecurity and fix security vulnerabilities promptly
  • A variety of integration options

Safety over EtherCAT (FSoE)

Axioline Smart Elements

The new TÜV-certified Axioline Smart Elements enable safe communication over EtherCAT (FSoE).
Axioline Smart Elements are plug-in, system-independent modules without bus communication. The individual element only supports the I/O function. Bus communication for the relevant I/O system is only realized in conjunction with a backplane, which functions similarly to an adapter.

Main features

  • Eight safe digital inputs with two test pulses
  • Four safe digital outputs up to 2 A

Your Advantages

  • Safe communication over EtherCAT (FSoE)
  • TÜV-certified for the highest safety requirements up to SIL 3/PL e
  • Significant space savings in the control cabinet with the modularly combinable I/O system
  • Reduced wiring time with Push-in Technology
  • Simple status signaling with LEDs

Analog input and output modules

Axioline Smart Elements

Axioline Smart Elements can be integrated into systems with Smart Element interfaces. They are suitable for all devices from the PLCnext Control family and Axioline F bus couplers. The new I/O modules allow the operation of four analog -10 V to 10 V signals.

Main features

  • Four analog output channels
  • Signal range: -10 V … 10 V
  • Four analog input channels
  • Signal range: -10 V … 10 V

Your Advantages

  • Four analog channels in one compact housing
  • Significant space savings in the control cabinet with the modularly combinable I/O system
  • Reduced wiring time with Push-in Technology
  • Simple status signaling with LEDs

PLC extension module for safety applications


This module is a PLC extension for PLCnext Control. It is connected on the left side of the controller. This extends the hardware portfolio for PLCnext Technology with a powerful safety PLC for PROFIsafe networks and for the highest functional safety requirements.

Main features

  • PROFIsafe F-Host for communication with up to 300 F-Devices
  • PROFIsafe F-Device integrated
  • Width: 100 mm
  • SCPU Arm® Cortex® A9 and A8 with 800 MHz and 600 MHz for maximum performance

Your Advantages

  • Fully integrated with PLCnext Technology
  • Can be programmed with PLCnext Engineer
  • Maximum modularity with safety I/Os
  • Simultaneous communication as F-Host and F-Device in PROFIsafe networks

PLCnext Control from the Axiocontrol series

Scalable PLCnext Control in different performance classes

Open and innovative – modular PLCnext Control from the Axiocontrol series

The robust Phoenix Contact Axiocontrol series features several PLCs in various performance classes for PLCnext Technology. They are designed for programming with high-level languages, as well as classic IEC 61131-3 languages.
The PLCs can be extended with modules for the Axioline and Inline IP20 I/O systems. Furthermore, you can also add further hardware functions, such as an additional Ethernet port or safety and AI functions, to the left of the AXC F 2152 and AXC F 3152 PLCnext Control.

Security is based on a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) where user certificates can also be stored. The controllers in this series are the first PLCs to be certified by TÜV Süd to IEC 62443-4-1 ML 3 Full Process Profile in combination with IEC 62443-4-2. This confirms that the Secure Development Life Cycle was fully applied in developing PLCnext Control. Product certification in accordance with IEC 62443-4-1/-4-2 confirms that a product has been developed safely and provides information about which technical safety requirements have been implemented. Activating the security profile also gives you access to an extensive range of security level 2 (SL2) functions.

High-performance PLCnext Control

High-performance PLCnext Control

Safe and redundant – PLCnext Control for large networks

With the high-performance controllers for PLCnext Technology, you can realize, among other things, automation applications that place high demands on safety or availability. For applications requiring the highest safety level, play it safe with our safety controllers up to SIL 3. They combine maximum safety, due to the use of two independent CPUs, with a high-performance four-core system which can operate very large networks with up to 300 safety-related devices.

Redundant automation systems help you reduce downtimes, work cost-effectively, and also avoid potential dangers, such as in tunnels or at airports. The integrated redundancy function based on fiber optics means that the process is not interrupted if one controller fails or is replaced. The RFC controller is based on PROFINET and establishes system redundancy automatically with AutoSync Technology.

Both RFCs feature a simple user interface with improved handling with a resistive touch screen. This ensures high-level monitoring.
With the embedded OPC UA server, the PLCs are already equipped to handle future demands today with the use of a standardized communication protocol.

PLCnext Control for edge computing – use cases

PLCnext Control for edge applications in two performance classes

Data-centered and compact – PLCnext Control for edge computing

PLCnext Control for edge applications allow you to create IoT edge solutions for making the best cloud-based use of data from the field. This allows you to close the gap between the IT and OT worlds. PLCnext Technology makes easy integration into existing IT infrastructure possible.

You can reduce development and provision times using pre-installed software tools such as Node-RED, a local time series database, and a simple cloud connection. Data processing in close physical proximity to the user allows information to be exchanged quickly, securely, and without latency. An integrated web-based management tool guarantees simple and secure management. Moreover, the edge device is particularly compact and cooled passively in a full metal housing.

PLCnext Technology Starterkit
Start with PLCnext Technology now!
Enter the open world of PLCnext Technology and take inspiration from the functionality, operation, and exceptional performance. Have fun, and good luck with your programming.
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PLCnext Technology Starterkit
Automation system with PLCnext Control and various I/Os

Automation system with PLCnext Control and various I/Os

High modularity in the automation system with I/Os

Do you need I/Os for your automation system? With the extensive portfolio of I/O modules, PLC stations which optimally implement the respective application requirements can be set up in accordance with the modular principle. You can then connect the block-modular I/O modules from the Axioline F product family as well as the Axioline Smart Elements, which can be assembled flexibly in a confined space, to an Axiocontrol series PLCnext Control. In addition to digital and analog modules, the I/O portfolio also includes various function modules. Some Axioline F modules are also available in versions for very harsh ambient conditions.

Are you already using the Inline I/O system from Phoenix Contact for the automation of your systems and would you like to benefit from additional advantages in the future by upgrading to the PLCnext Technology ecosystem? The Inline adapter terminal allows you to outfit an existing I/O station easily with a PLCnext Control, thereby enabling the successive modernization of an existing system.
The appropriate I/O functions can be selected and the I/O station configured quickly and without errors using the Project+ software.

PLC extensions for safety, Ethernet, and INTERBUS

PLC extensions for safety, Ethernet, and INTERBUS

Extend PLCnext Control functionality

Extend the functions of your PLCnext Control (AXC F 2152 or AXC F 3152) with a safety, Ethernet, or AI module that can be aligned to the left of the controller, for example. This allows you to provide an additional Ethernet interface and to optimize your controller for applications with artificial intelligence and machine learning. The left-aligning PROFIsafe extensions are fully functional safety-oriented PLCs that extend the functional scope of your PLCnext Control for safety applications up to SIL 3. Connect up to three modules to your PLC with an additional extension module.

Use the additional parts of the PLCnext Technology ecosystem

PLCnext Engineer
Programmer working on a laptop
Laptop with PLCnext Store on the screen
PLCnext Engineer

The flexible PLCnext Engineer software platform provides you with a free software tool that combines all the engineering tasks associated with PLCnext Control in a single tool. The software enables configuration, programming in accordance with IEC 61131-3, safety programming, visualization, and diagnostics, and can be expanded with additional functions and interfaces using add-ins.
PLCnext Engineer makes it possible to call up high-level language programs or MATLAB® Simulink® models and to commission and manage these on a PLCnext Control. High-level language code is thus conveniently combined with the standard automation.

To the software
Programmer working on a laptop

Through simple cloud integration, the option to use open source software, and the constantly growing expertise of the PLCnext Community, you will benefit from new forms of collaboration. Benefit from information, support, and useful resources for PLCnext Technology. Or post a question in the forum and receive answers from our experts and other users. Find FAQs, watch tutorials, and benefit from our presence on GitHub, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Read about exciting applications and find out more about industry trends and use cases in the Maker's Blog.

To the community
Laptop with PLCnext Store on the screen

The PLCnext Store offers software applications (apps) with which you can immediately and easily extend the functionality of a PLCnext Control. The open nature of the store also allows third-party providers to sell the apps that they have developed. With the PLCnext Store, you have a variety of apps for any application available – from software libraries for accelerated programming to pre-programmed apps that require no programming knowledge to use.

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New PLCnext Technology e-paper
Check out the first interactive e-paper on PLCnext Technology now and find all the information you need in one place. You will find buttons throughout this e-paper that enable further interaction. Be inspired by exciting applications, take a closer look at our hardware with 3D images, find out about products in our web shop, or learn more about all four parts of the ecosystem. Plus, there are plenty of related links and embedded videos on all your favorite topics.
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PLCnext Technology e-paper