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6. Update on OPC UA

6. Update on OPC UA

OPC UA is aiming for a world where things are connected, communicated, and secured by expanding the scope to deliver its values in terms of both technology and application.

Generation of new value: OPC UA from sensor to cloud

Technologies including OPC UA have provided values through vertical integration with higher-level systems as a bridge between FA and IT. The Field Level Communications (FLC) Initiative aims to provide values through horizontal interoperability on the production floor.

Generation of new value: OPC UA from sensor to cloud Generation of new value: OPC UA from sensor to cloud
IT/OT communication
Cloud integration
Controller to controller
Controller to field device
Secure remote access
Local OT communication
Wireless integration (5G)
Future ready

Source: OPC Foundation Japan

The OPC Foundation released in November 2018 that they would develop an OPC UA specification for interoperability between controllers and between controllers and robots or field devices. Some working groups were established, and they started to work for standardization. Omron joined the standardization working group as a steering member.

Real time and high speed are essential for industrial interoperability. Technology used to achieve this is TSN (Time Sensitive Networking). TSN is a new Ethernet standard that the IEEE 802.1 working group aims to standardize, enabling time synchronization and packet scheduling. This will ensure real-time operations required for field networks, while maintaining the advantage of standard Ethernet.

The OPC Foundation and its member companies are working together with IEEE to develop an OPC UA standard that integrates the field level.

Generation of new value: OPC UA from sensor to cloud

Further expansion of collaborations

In 3. Activities of OPC UA (1) Collaboration, we looked at active collaborations to enable interoperability. Collaborations are still expanding. This chapter introduces two collaborations:

Expanding at manufacturing: umati (universal machine tool interface)

Expanding outside manufacturing: HKI

A six-part series has introduced the outline, features, and specific examples of OPC UA which is becoming increasingly prevalent. We hope that the contents will be of any use to your business and productivity improvement.

(End)

  1. 1. Outline of OPC UA "The Industrial Interoperability Standard"
  2. 2. Features of OPC UA “Connected, Communicated, Secured”
  3. 3. Activities of OPC UA (1) Collaboration
  4. 4. Activities of OPC UA (2) Compliance
  5. 5. OPC UA Products and Case Studies
  6. 6. Update on OPC UA (this article)
  7. 7. The proliferation and evolution of OPC UA


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