Flexible “Plug-and-Produce” Manufacturing with OPC UA

Softing Industrial Automation is pleased to announce the presentation of its OPC UA Development Toolkits in action as part of the SmartFactoryKL demonstration factory at this year's Hannover Messe.

The stand of the technology initiative SmartFactory KL e.V. (Hall 8, Stand D20) showcases the further developed and hitherto unique vendor-independent Industrie 4.0 demonstration factory, which shows what the intelligent factory of tomorrow may look like in a real-world production environment. The central .NET client and the OPC Unified Architecture (UA) information model of the SmartFactoryKL demonstration factory have been developed using the OPC UA .NET Client Development Toolkit from Softing Industrial Automation. In addition to providing the toolkit, Softing also supported the development with OPC UA training. When the demonstration factory is started up, the .NET client performs topology discovery. While production is running, it uses the OPC UA information model to track each product through each module and processing step in the factory. The information in the OPC UA information model is continuously updated and includes data such as topology, production status (active, reconfiguration, error, etc.), customer number and priority of each product that is read. This enables a plug-and-play exchange of modules and a flexible plant design for production down to a lot size of one.

“Softing is proud to be a member of SmartFactoryKL. Based on many years of scientific groundwork, this vendor-independent demonstration and research platform represents the original vision of Industrie 4.0,” says Dr. Wolfgang Trier, CEO of Softing AG. “By making use of existing standards, the trade fair demonstrator shows what is already possible today in transforming the idea of Industrie 4.0 into reality. In 2015 we are taking our membership to the next level by becoming an active partner in the trade fair demonstrator. Softing contributes its extensive experience and expertise in OPC technology by providing training as well as development toolkits for OPC UA software components. Both form the basis for the OPC UA information model spanning the entire demonstration factory, and for the central .NET OPC UA Client.”

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