Back to Blog
Applications and How-Tos

Setup Guide: KEB VFD Ethernet over EtherCAT (EoE) Communication with a Beckhoff PLC

Colin Zauner | May 3rd, 2022

This article guides users through an EtherCAT VFD setup using a Beckhoff PLC and TwinCAT software in six easy steps. To perform this setup successfully, you will need:

  1. A computer with both TwinCAT and COMBIVIS 6 software.
  2. An application with a Beckhoff PLC and a connected KEB F6 or S6 EtherCAT drive.

Ethernet over EtherCAT (EoE)

EtherCAT supports multiple communication profiles to access EtherCAT slave device parameters. The Ethernet over EtherCAT (EoE) profile is useful for configuring and diagnosing slave devices by allowing access to the slave’s parameters over a network connection. EoE allows data from common internet protocols such as HTTP, FTP, etc. to be inserted into the EtherCAT protocol data without affecting the EtherCAT process data. The EtherCAT master and slave must support EoE to utilize this functionality.

KEB S6 and F6 products support EoE to allow for parameter access using an Ethernet cable. Drive parameterization, tuning, and diagnostics is all possible using EoE without using a COMBIVIS cable.


#1 Enable EoE on EtherCAT Master

Select the EtherCAT Master in the device tree [figure 1] -> EtherCAT -> Advanced Settings -> EoE Support.

  • Enable the virtual Ethernet Switch
  • Enable Connect to TCP/IP Stack
  • Enable IP Enable Router


Figure 1 – Select EoE Support


#2 – Set a Mailbox Polling time

The next step in the EtherCAT VFD setup is to select the KEB VFD in the device tree [figure 2] -> Select EtherCAT -> Advanced Settings -> Mailbox -> Mailbox Polling -> Select Cyclic and define a polling time.


Figure 2 – Select Cyclic and define a polling time


#3 – Set the KEB VFD IP Address

Set the KEB VFD IP Address by selecting the VFD in the device tree [figure 3] -> EtherCAT -> Advanced Settings -> Mailbox -> EoE . Once the configuration has been activated on the PLC, the drive’s IP address is set.


Figure 3 – Set the KEB VFD IP Address


#4 –  Add Route on PC running Combivis 6

Open the command prompt as an admin. Add a route from the EoE Slave to redirect the IP traffic from the EtherCAT slave to the PC running Combivis: route ADD [IP EoE Slave] [IP PLC]

If you are using a SoftPLC and COMBIVIS is running on the same PC that is running the TwinCAT runtime this step is not necessary for this EtherCAT VFD setup.


Add Route Command from Command Prompt
Figure 4 – Route IP traffic from the EtherCAT slave to the PC running COMBIVIS.


#5 – Build the solution and download it to the Beckhoff PLC

Select Build -> Build Solution.


Figure 5 – Click on Build Solution


After a successful build, download the project to the PLC by selecting TwinCAT -> Activate Configuration. At this point, the setup and configuration in TwinCAT are complete.


Figure 6 – Select “Activate Configuration” to download the project to the PLC


#6 – Connect to KEB VFD using Combivis 6

Open COMBIVIS 6 to create a new project. Select File -> New Project. From the new project templates, select KEB device scan. Select the TCP/IP UDP selection box and enter the IP address of the drive previously configured in step 3.

Finally, the last step in this EtherCAT VFD setup is to select “Start Search” and after the device is found select “Add selected devices.” The EoE configuration is complete and enabled. The VFD can be programmed as needed.


Figure 7 – Set up EoE in Combivis 6 to allow the VFD to be programmed 


If you would like to contact a KEB application engineer to discuss your specific application, contact us today!

Contact Us

Let's Work Together

Connect with us today to learn more about our industrial automation solutions—and how to commission them for your application.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.