is a master-slave communication protocol, which means that during normal operation, each slave (field device) communication is initiated by a master communication device. Two masters can connect to each HART loop. The primary master is generally a distributed control system DCS, programmable logic controller PLC, or a personal computer PC. The secondary master can be a handheld terminal or another PC. Slave devices include transmitters, actuators, and controllers that respond to commands from the primary or secondary master.
Frequency Shift Keying
The HART communication protocol is based on the Bell 202 telephone Communication standard and operates using the frequency shift keying (FSK) principle. The digital signal is made up of two frequencies-1,200 Hz and 2,200 Hz representing bits 1 and 0, respectively. Sine waves of these two frequencies are superimposed on the direct current (dc) analog signal cables to provide simultaneous analog and digital communications. Because the average value of the FSK signal is always zero, the 4-20 mA analog signal is not affected. The digital communication signal has a response time of approximately 2-3 data updates per second without interrupting the analog signal. A minimum loop impedance of 230 W is required for communication.
Some HART devices support the optional burst communication mode. Burst mode enables faster communication (3-4 data updates per second). In burst mode, the master instructs the slave device to continuously broadcast a standard HART reply message (e.g., the value of the process variable). The master receives the message at the higher rate until it instructs the slave to stop bursting.