Open Architectures To Improve Plant Visibility And Performances
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Overview: Manufacturing companies have invested large amounts of money in industrial automation infrastructures, but many have yet to realize the full value from their investment as many of these infrastructures remain islands of automation; information silos disconnected from other systems, including business systems. This paper will discuss some of the options available for integrating automation islands and for distributing information at any level in the organization. In particular, two main players in the system integration arena will be examined: OLE for Process Control (OPC) and Service Oriented Architecture (SOA). Some drawbacks that such technologies may have will be mentioned and alternative solutions will be explored. Real-world examples will be presented to show benefits provided by open architectures.