Factory automation manufacturers use high-performance systems to solve integration problems
integration is a big problem in the field of factory systems. Due to technologies such as standard based programming interface, SOA Based Middleware Platform and portal technology, and due to the progress of prototype shape and size of each manufacturer, factory automation manufacturers provide users with a general solution that can perform multiple functions
take a plant wide control system recently implemented by Genentech, a biotechnology company, in a plant in California. The system meets Genentech's desire to reduce product quality differences and develop a tracking system for the whole plant. These goals are essential for Genentech to maintain homogeneous production of products and ensure compliance with government regulations
this California plant runs a variety of Honeywell systems - including pomsnet manufacturing execution system (MES) - which are built to manage product specifications in pharmaceutical and biotechnology plants; Experion process knowledge system - it helps companies comply with federal regulations on electronic record keeping and approval of biotechnology manufacturing processes. However, until Honeywell developed an architecture that allowed the smooth transfer of data between these systems, these systems could not work in harmonyHoneywell has developed a factory level manufacturing control system using a new programming interface that meets industry standards. The system
improves the overall equipment efficiency of the factory and ensures the accurate recording of each batch of drugs produced by Genentech factory in CaliforniaThe architecture developed by Honeywell is based on the programming interface that conforms to the S95 standard (the standard for the connection of MES and ERP systems), which enables Genentech to integrate its batch processing and factory data archiving management solutions - both of which are provided by Honeywell - into its new plant wide control network
as a result, an integrated tool was obtained, which improved the overall efficiency of the factory and ensured the accurate recording of each batch of drugs produced
integration with multiple solutions
genentech may have advantages in eliminating the differences between its systems, because these systems are developed by one manufacturer, even if they are not integrated from scratch. However, factory level system manufacturers are still trying to realize the connection between different systems in the factory. In many cases, large industrial control equipment manufacturers work together to develop solutions that meet the needs of specific users
for example, Rockwell software has embedded osisoft's data acquisition and analysis solution into the Rockwell factorytalk suite, which contains application software for the design of production processes to the performance testing of these processes. The integration of factorytalk and osisoft PI (factory Intelligence) system is realized through SOA, which endows these applications with some "plug and play" capabilities
"connect to a Rockwell system (including osisoft function), which will automatically configure the system, identify the equipment in your factory, and guess that you want to record the content in the historical database," said Kevin roach, vice president of Rockwell software. "Integrating the products of these two companies can create value by reducing design time, cost and complexity."
roach also pointed out that connecting with osisoft is only part of Rockwell's strategy. The company is building a platform to provide a wide range of solutions. "We have a very robust R & D, cooperation and procurement channel, and will join with many partners," he said
horizontal and vertical joint
invensys process systems has also been trying to connect its various existing products to a technical platform. The infusion platform integrates various capabilities of Invensys brand - including Foxboro's process control capabilities, Wonderware's HMI, factory intelligence and device integration capabilities, avantis's real-time monitoring and enterprise asset management capabilities, SIMSCI esscor's simulation and process optimization, and Triconex's safety and key control functions
osisoft's PI collects detailed data about factory activities and collates them for analysis
the cooperation between osisoft and Rockwell will embed these functions into Rockwell's factorytalk production management suite
"it is a superset of all products we sell," explained Peter Martin, vice president of Invensys' strategic risk department. "We are no longer a holding company. We are Invensys - not Wonderware, Foxboro, Triconex, SIMSCI esscor or avantis."
although this horizontal factory level integration has proved to be extremely important, many manufacturers have begun to focus on a larger goal: vertical application integration "from the workshop to the top management". Moreover, manufacturers are also responding to this demand
Patrick Ken, President of osisoft, then inspected the internal shortcomings of these samples. Nedy said that users usually want to transfer factory data to enterprise level systems, and hope that this transfer is real-time. The key point here is to deliver data to employees in time, so that they can find potential problems in advance rather than afterwards, and respond to these problems in a timely mannerAccording to Kennedy, osisoft has developed a "high availability" version of its flagship pi system to respond to these needs. This version has fault-tolerant software, which provides functions such as interface failover, buffering, and server replication, "so that data is always online and available."
however, the technical barrier to integration from the workshop to the top management is not the only difficulty to overcome. There are also organizational and cultural barriers to overcome
Kevin tock, vice president of MES of Wonderware branch of Invensys, said that the IT department is more and more interested in what happens in the factory. "A few years ago, we were very unlikely to have a conversation with the IT department," said tock
the importance attached to the discussion of IT staff participating in the implementation and integration of the workshop system has led to the alliance between Rockwell and Cisco Systems, a networking equipment giant. Rockwell's Roach said that such cooperation is necessary because too many Rockwell customers feel that they used to get conflicting suggestions about the best solution to obtain real-time factory data through enterprise networks
the reason for this contradiction is that Cisco almost always talks to it staff, while Rockwell spends most of its time working with the manufacturing team, Roach said
manufacturers are planning a series of training seminars to develop the best way to establish a clear communication line between it and manufacturing departments. This will enable us to better understand the potential risks faced by it and manufacturing departments on specific projects, and ultimately make the network integration project more successful
"customers need an application architecture that can connect the office network environment and factory control system," said Dan knight, Cisco industrial solutions manager. "Factories and it managers need to obtain secure, real-time information transparency between the production site and ERP, CRM and supply chain systems." (end)