How open must or should an automation solution be?
For the successful implementation of a modern automation system, the simple integration of hardware into a higher-level system is no longer sufficient. What is needed is a shared and software-based "ecosystem" that must be flexible, transparent, scalable and, above all, open.
OPC UA: Future-proof for machine manufacturers?
Industry 4.0 and Smart Factories, IIoT and data-based business models are significant trends for which the machine engineering sector must find a response. Greater intelligence and flexibility for machines and systems can only be realized with comprehensive data exchange, which in turn is only possible with uniform standards. While OPC UA does provide an important key, it does not solve all problems.
The I4.0 platform, Smart Factory, IIoT and standardization are defining the path into the future landscape of automation.
The current trends in industrial automation would not be possible without strong standardization. At the same time, however, the I4.0 platform and the Smart Factory are more than just based on standards—they also increase the pressure to drive standardization forward. For suppliers staying on the sidelines, the niche is getting smaller and smaller.
OPC UA – an overview over the central Industry 4.0 standard
In principle, technical standards are supposed to improve the efficiency and interoperability of technical devices and components. But frequently we find competing standards, in particular in the industrial sector. This becomes even more problematic in the era of Industry 4.0 and increasingly networked machines and systems. Enter OPC UA, a platform that is poised to overcome the old rivalries.