Ethercat LIBRARY

The DLR EtherCAT Library is a Modelica Library to communicate in real-time with EtherCAT slaves via the open source EtherCAT Master EtherLab.

It wraps the API of EtherLab and uses code-generation to create interface blocks in Modelica representing the slaves connected to the EtherCAT bus. These blocks subsequently can be used to build real-time models, running on a Linux based real-time system and therefore controlling the hardware directly from the model.



  • Asynchronous communications  with the slaves via SDO messages is possible directly from within Modelica
  • Different communication rates are possible for slaves in different domains
  • Model execution is synchronized with EtherCAT communication rate
Control of a DC machine via an EtherCAT connected drive. Top: Reference and current speed, Bottom: motor currents
  • Interface models for EtherCAT PDOs are generated automatically with the slave information available on the EtherCAT bus.


Code-generated plant library showing the EtherCat slaves