OPC UA in the Oil & Gas Industry

headshot_tom-burke By Tom Burke, President and Executive Director of the OPC Foundation

Welcome to the June edition of OPC Connect. The theme of this issue is OPC engagement in the Oil & Gas industry. The OPC Foundation has been actively collaborating with many segments of this sector to facilitate interoperable automation.

We have been actively working with such working groups as DSATS (Drilling Systems Automation Technical Section), which is all about drilling system automation. They are using OPC UA as the standard protocol for communicating information throughout the drilling process.

Additionally, we are actively working with MDIS (MCS-DCS Interface Standardization), which is a major initiative engaging subsea vendors, oil companies, owner operators, and major automation suppliers to standardize on a set of objects. The group is defining a complete infrastructure to provide interoperability that uses OPC UA as a mechanism for modeling the complex information objects and transporting the data between the devices and applications involved in the total solution.

The OPC Foundation is also a charter member of the Standards Leadership Council (SLC), which is composed of a multitude of upstream oil and gas standards organizations. These organizations are working together to provide the best specifications and technology to ensure interoperability and efficiency across their respective domains.

The collaboration between Energistics and the OPC Foundation is a direct result of this effort, which will lead to the development of an OPC UA companion specification for PRODML. Many of the oil companies and supplier vendors will be actively engaged in this important initiative.

One of the key components in OPC UA is the ability to model complex information and represent these structures in the address space. This allows information models from other standards organizations, such as those in the Oil & Gas industry, to be acquired by applications that have no knowledge about the domain, and then make use of the information.

I am very excited about these collaborations, as they clearly demonstrate the commitment of our end-users and suppliers to the adoption of OPC UA. This newsletter highlights some of the major achievements of our collaborations in the Oil & Gas industry.

Learn more about the OPC Foundation’s collaborations in the Oil & Gas industry.