3rd December 2019
TÜV SÜD Korea and Korea Electronics Technology Institute (KETI) jointly organized an Interoperability Plugfest in the premises of Smart Factory Innovation Center (SMIC), Ansan city, in association with The Korea Agency for Technology and Standards (KATS). It was the first time to have such testing in Korea in cooperation with three organizations. This event aimed to diagnose the fundamental services of OPC UA products. The plugfest was attended by major UA devices manufacturers in Korea including LSIS, CIMON, MITSUBISHI ELECTRIC, HANCOM MDS, Festo Korea, Wizcore, and MIRACOM with their PLC/MES/SCADA UA devices for interoperability testing.
In the era of smart factories, factories are intelligent and interconnected as well as the machines and processes of individual factories. All information generated through the manufacturing process is also shared and utilized in real time. The integration and interoperability of networking systems inside and outside the boundary of factory is very important for the smart factories.
Interoperability means harmonious exchange of information with syntax and semantics understandable by all the systems in a smart factory. Interoperability is recognized as one of the core principles for realizing a smart factory. But interworking with each other is difficult due to the different data formats and communication standards supported by the equipment and applications at each layer.
OPC UA (Open Platform Communications Unified Architecture), also known as IEC 62541, is an interoperability standard developed by the OPC Foundation, which has the capability to communicate all the way to cloud layer. It also enables the systems to communicate across firewall boundaries. It is critical for IoT implementation to ensure the compatibility and stability between machines, equipment, and communication signals in a smart factory. OPC UA can support a variety of operating systems including Windows, Linux and many embedded OS, as well as multiple programming languages such as C, .Net, Java, and Python. Convinced with the advantages and necessities of OPC UA as we move towards an era of smart manufacturing, TÜV SÜD AG is now a corporate member of the OPC foundation and takes an active part in developing it, contributing to various working groups and providing essential services around it.
“Lack of support services, validation by testing and certification are always major roadblocks for adoption of a technology and this is exactly what TÜV SÜD and KETI are addressing together in Korea. The interoperability plugfest in Ansan is the first of its kind in Korea and we are happy that we could organize it with KETI and KATS to test the interoperability of the solutions from the participants,” says Aranya Sarkar, Project Manager Smart Factory Solutions, TÜV SÜD Korea.
TÜV SÜD showed the participants its future service offering including testing and certification schemes to support throughout a solution lifecycle. “It was a good opportunity for us to test OPC UA interoperability of our product. Interoperability between devices in a smart factory requires various protocol support and training. Based on OPC UA, however, user convenience and the stability of data transmission will get improved”, says Sung-Hyun Park, CIMON. “We plan to follow this up with bigger OPC UA plugfests every year so that the solution providers and manufacturers test their solutions against each other, making the job of the integrators and the operators simpler.” says Aranya Sarkar.
TÜV SÜD Korea has been setting up a ‘Industrial Interoperability Testing Laboratory (IITL)’ for testing and certifying interoperability in industrial scenarios together with KETI. The main goals that the lab would fulfill include:
a) Testing and validation of implemented open industrial communication standards (e.g. OPC UA, TSN, DDS etc.) that are implemented to enable interoperability in industrial scenarios
b) Certification according to level of conformance and interoperability achieved (both product and process certifications)
c) Support services (Training, seminars, workshops, consultations) for quicker adoption of the required technologies
d) Easier adoption of testing of new technologies and support throughout the entire lifecycle of its development through maintenance
Press-contact: Dirk Moser-Delarami