The OPC Foundation pursues interoperability in industrial automation by creating and maintaining open specifications that standardise communication of acquired process data, alarm and event records, historical data, and batch data to multi-vendor enterprise systems and between production devices. The goal for OPC is to be the foundation for interoperability for moving information vertically from the factory floor through the enterprise of multi-vendor systems as well as providing interoperability between devices on different industrial networks from different vendors. The CC-Link Partner Association is an international organisation with over 2600 member companies worldwide. Their common goal is the promotion and development of advanced open network technologies such as CC-Link IE (Industrial Ethernet) and CC Link (fieldbus).
Digitalisation in all areas of industrial automation requires consistent communications across all levels while using Internet technologies, both inside and outside of the factory, for example to cloud-based services. This is precisely what the OPC Foundation and the CLPA hope to achieve by developing an interface specification with harmonised access.
At the Hannover Fair, Thomas J. Burke, President and Executive Director of the OPC Foundation and Naomi Nakamura, Global Director of the CC-Link Partner Association signed a Memorandum of Understanding in which both organisations agree to closely cooperate while developing these interfaces. Mr Burke, President and Executive Director OPC Foundation, says: “This collaboration between the OPC Foundation and the CLPA provides a complete solution for CC-Link networks and devices to the cloud. End-users who have selected the reliable CC-Link networks will also be able to integrate with other disparate systems to achieve complete data and information exchange”.
Ms. Nakamura, Global Director of CLPA says: “CLPA is at the forefront of offering solutions that help users to achieve their Industry 4.0 aspirations. For example, CC-Link IE already offers the greatest bandwidth for these applications with our unique gigabit Ethernet. By working with the OPC Foundation, we now want to take this a step further. Our aim is to make the task of getting data from machines simpler by supporting edge computing. By extending our CSP+ technology combined with OPC-UA, machines will be treated as if they were just a single device. This will allow information to be easily shared throughout an enterprise and beyond.”