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Industrial Ethernet Book Issue 115 / 6
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Industry 4.0 machine tool standard uses OPC UA

SEVENTY COMPANIES FROM 10 COUNTRIES have connected 110 machines and 28 value-added services at EMO Hannover 2019 via the OPC UA based umati standard Interface.

Created and prototyped by seventeen machine builders and the VDW, the umati demonstration facilitates context rich communications between machines and software solutions from a wide variety of vendors. Unprecedented in scale, the demonstration showcases seamless use of multi-vendor machine data by end-user applications using OPC UA connectivity and information modeling.

Beyond moving data between machines and applications for production purposes, the umati companion specification preserves the context of the machine data, and standardizes how it is expressed. This consistent semantic representation enables rapid development of meaningful dashboards, HMI displays, and reports from multivendor systems.

Dr. Alexander Broos, umati project manager and Head of Research and Technology explained umati has also already made a strong impression internationally. Three international consortia from major machine tool manufacturing countries have joined the interface: ProdNet from Switzerland, Edgecross from Japan and NCLink from China. In addition, machine tool associations from China, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Spain and Taiwan as well as the European machine tool association Cecimo are supporting the project. "umati is opening up a new chapter in production," said Dr. Heinz-Jürgen Prokop, Chairman of the VDW. "Choosing the OPC UA standard as a basis for the development of the interface supports international dissemination. It ensures that umati can be used free of charge worldwide," Prokop explained.

Ninety companies are contributing to the standardization work in the Joint Working Group together with the OPC Foundation. The release of Version 1.0 of the Companion Specification, the next milestone, is planned for the middle of 2020.

Press release by OPC Foundation.

Source: Industrial Ethernet Book Issue 115 / 6
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