More interoperability, less effort

Think Again: Highest level of interoperability includes the capability to plug in a device and—without additional configuration—have it do what it’s supposed to do. Standards, industry organizations, certifications, and a variety of organizations profess plug-and-play interoperability as a goal.

05/01/2008


ONLINE extra

Read more about interoperability.

Highest level of interoperability includes the capability to plug in a device and—without additional configuration—have it do what it’s supposed to do. Standards, industry organizations, certifications, and a variety of organizations profess plug-and-play interoperability as a goal.

With automation, controls, instrumentation, and enough system integration, almost anything can be made to connect and at least communicate at some level. Most people would rather spend time or effort adding value in other ways, hoping equipment and device manufacturers will help them avoid the plug-and- pray scenarios of the past. And it’s happening:

  • ISA88 Part 5 . Interoperability continues to be a key issue for participants working to create the Make2Pack ISA88 Part 5 standard, which aims to improve connections among batch, process, and discrete controls, as well as to expand the scalability and reuse of embedded programming. A tabletop equipment demonstration at a recent meeting showed controllers, two conveyors, photoelectric sensors, safety interlocks, terminal blocks, and an HMI interface using the latest in Part 5 thinking. “Interoperability is the hope,” according to David Chappell, Part 5 chairman, who discusses these points and others in the Standard profits: Make2Pack and ISA88 blog, accessible at www.controleng.com .

  • Industrial networks . Fieldbus Foundation, kicking off its Americas seminar series, made it a point to note that its “Registration” effort aims to ensure interoperability among devices and hosts. (Read more about network certification, p. 54.) Easy to use will be more important; colleges now contain just one-third of the projected demand for engineers to replace pending retirements, says Chuck Carter, principle investigator/center director, Fieldbus Center at Lee College.

  • Software . OPC Foundation is working with system integrators and distributors to ensure implementations meet specifications. The foundation also works with test labs to “to ensure top product quality and reliability, particularly for OPC Unified Architecture components,” says Thomas J. Burke, OPC president and executive director.

  • Programming . Work by PLCopen and others on an XML schemas aims to create real IEC 61131-3 interoperable code among PLCs and in other areas.

Plug and play allows everyone involved to add value—beyond just making something do what it’s supposed to do in the first place.

MHoske@cfemedia.com


ONLINE extra on interoperability

Think Again question: Does interoperability matter enough to you to specify compliance with specific standards in your requests for proposals to vendors? Please comment using the tool below.

 

Related reading

Beyond networks: Optimize information use, Fieldbus Foundation says

 

Better OPC interoperability: Help for system integrators

 

Real interoperability? PLCopen revives TC6 - XML for better translation


Closing the Skills Gap: Programs designed to inspire the next generation of engineers ensure that fresh talent is ready to work as today’s engineers begin to retire.


OMAC: Open technologies, sharing best practices help integrate discrete, process manufacturing


Why are we doing this? Greater efficiency

Think Again: Easier connectedness


Think Again: Comply or die





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
World-class maintenance: The three keys to success - Deploy people, process and technology; 2016 Lubrication Guide; Why hydraulic systems get hot
Your leaks start here: Take a disciplined approach with your hydraulic system; U.S. presence at Hannover Messe a rousing success
Hannover Messe 2016: Taking hold of the future - Partner Country status spotlights U.S. manufacturing; Honoring manufacturing excellence: The 2015 Product of the Year Winners
The digital oilfield: Utilizing Big Data can yield big savings; Virtualization a real solution; Tracking SIS performance
Getting to the bottom of subsea repairs: Older pipelines need more attention, and operators need a repair strategy; OTC preview; Offshore production difficult - and crucial
Digital oilfields: Integrated HMI/SCADA systems enable smarter data acquisition; Real-world impact of simulation; Electric actuator technology prospers in production fields
Improving flowmeter calibration; Selecting flowmeters for natural gas; Case study: Streamlining assembly systems using PC-based control; CLPM: Improving process efficiency, throughput
Putting COPS into context; Designing medium-voltage electrical systems; Planning and designing resilient, efficient data centers; The nine steps of designing generator fuel systems
Warehouse winter comfort: The HTHV solution; Cooling with natural gas; Plastics industry booming

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.
This article collection contains several articles on strategic maintenance and understanding all the parts of your plant.
click me