Machines dominate our day-to-day work, but what makes them work as they should, usually remains in secret. HMIs (Human-Machine-Interfaces) form the interface between humans and machines and ensure machines can be monitored and controlled. Different end systems and data sources make it complex and time consuming to develop an application for machine control.
Manufacturer-independent communication with OPC UA
To unify the chaos of manufacturer-dependent communication protocols OPC Foundation found a new way to not only transport machine data but also use the semantic by establishing the latest version OPC UA.
Configuring HMIs with the Simplifier
With the IoT-Platform Simplifier modern HMIs and further business applications can be configured in record time. The Simplifier-approach can be visualized as three pillars:
Existing systems are connected bidirectionally so data can be aggregated and written back. Several data sources are possible like ERP, MES, CRM or PLM. Additionally app creation can be accelerated massively. Rapid deployment and the fact that all apps only need to be created once to run on any devices and operating systems are just two reasons.
The Simplifier gives access to new technologies because functions like sensor integration, scanning, tracking or AR already are implemented. So, the developer can use them in a new application but doesn’t need to have deep knowledge about the technical background. It’s the same with our newly developed OPC UA Connector which enables reading and writing machine data as well as browsing through all data nodes of the OPC UA server.
The User Interface
The User Interface is created within the Simplifier’s UI Designer. Knowledge in programming is not necessary as pre-configured widgets can easily be integrated into the new layout. On the left you can see the configuration screen, on the right the result.
The process logic
After the UI is created the content needs to be enriched with functionality. Via graphic definition of process logic buttons and field for in and output are connected with functions and values.
Browsing, reading and writing
The created application makes it possible to read the information all data nodes of the connected OPC UA server. By choosing one node one can see the value in detail, furthermore you one can correct values within the application. With a little more time effort one can also visualize real time values.