The development of OPC UA functionalities

CEMAFON, together with VDMA Metallurgy and the OPC Foundation, has recently launched the “OPC UA High Pressure Die Casting Initiative”, involving the manufacturers of pressure die casting machines and associated equipment in the development of OPC UA functionalities. Mechanical and plant engineering must consider the fact that many customer scenarios of guiding vision Industry 4.0 are only possible through a manufacturer-independent interoperable exchange of information. This also applies to the manufacture of die-cast parts using pressure die casting machines and associated equipment (socalled diecasting cells). Although the pressure die casting machine (PDCM) already has standardized interfaces to peripheral equipment such as PDCM – extracting devices (VDMA 24491), PDCM – die spraying devices (VDMA 24492) and PDCM – metal feeding devices (VDMA 24493), these do not meet the requirements of interoperable information exchange between manufacturers. This is where the open interface standard “Open Platform Communications Unified Architecture (OPC UA)” is established, which is intended to define the mechanisms of cooperation in the industrial environment of die casting production.

An OPC UA CS is a manufacturer-independent information model that represents the actual interface between components, machines and plants. With an OPC UA CS, a machine can be more easily integrated into a plant network, since standardized device and capability information is described equally by all manufacturers. In addition, a simplified connection to software systems for planning and controlling production is possible.