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Industrial Ethernet Book Issue 112 / 4
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Open Process Automation Forum Standard

The Open Group bases its new O-PAS process automation reference architecture on OPC Unified Architecture.

OPC UA CONNECTIVITY AND INFORMATION modeling capabilities are playing a key role in The Open Group, Open Process Automation Forum's decision to base its new O-PAS reference architecture on OPC UA.

OPC UA announcement

The OPC Foundation announced details on this development recently. Given the ambitious OPAF mandate to standardize how fully federated process automation systems can be built using open and interoperable reference architectures, its decision to adopt OPC UA as the foundation is a testament to the importance OPC UA is playing in the Industrial Internet of Things era.

Ed Harrington, Forum Director, OPAF and Steve Nunn, CEO, The Open Group commented on the scope, urgency, and importance of the OPC UA based O-PAS standard.

"The launch of the first OPAF standard demonstrates the growing need for practical guidance in the development of process control systems," Harrington said. "Since the launch of the forum, we have seen more than 80-member organizations become directly

involved with the development of this new Reference Architecture. The resulting O-PAS Standard will be a ′standard of standards′ to bring greater unity and consistency in how process automation is achieved."

Nunn added that "end-user demand for standards enabling interoperability is increasing due to the business need to reduce capital costs for process control, along with making scalability and cybersecurity capabilities an inherent part of these systems."

Stefan Hoppe, OPC Foundation President and Executive Director commented that "the Open Group commitment to open standards is aligned with the OPC Foundation. OPC Foundation representatives and OPC UA suppliers have been and continue to work with OPAF to help ensure that the OPAF end-user community best realizes the value OPC UA has to offer in delivering complete information integration and interoperability from the embedded world to the cloud."

According to Bernhard Eschermann, Chief Technology Officer, ABB′s Industrial Automation division, "we are happy to see OPC UA as the standard connectivity component agreed on by Open Process Automation Forum. This is an important step to get products from multiple process automation suppliers working with each other without the need for expensive interfacing and engineering. It will also enable suppliers to focus on value-add solutions for customers rather than having to implement multiple connectivity standards."

Version 1.0

The O-PAS Standard, Version 1.0, is focused on meeting the minimum standard and specification requirements for federated process automation systems, using an open and interoperable reference architecture. A key tenet of the standard is to adopt ′fit-for-purpose′ industry standards that exist in the marketplace today. As a result, the standard will incorporate functional elements already provided by multiple vendors, including:

  • Security: ANSI/ISA 62443 (adopted by IEC as IEC 62443)
  • Connectivity: OPC UA
  • Systems Management: DMTF Redfish

News by OPC Foundation and The Open Group.

Source: Industrial Ethernet Book Issue 112 / 4
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