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OPC Foundation Collaborations Update


    So, have you heard the latest about the exciting OPEN-SCS initiative?

    The OPEN-SCS (Open Serialization Communication Standard) is an initiative driven by Healthcare Providers to directly addresses the Healthcare Industry’s Product Serialization Regulation Wave of the next decade. The OPEN-SCS Working Group (OPEN-SCS) is partnered with the OPC Foundation to develop an open source standard in the Packaging Serialization Global Name Registry and an associated set of subscription-based work products.

    This initiative is developing deliverables to address serialization inclusive of an OPC UA companion specification. In late January I attended the OPEN-SCS steering and working group committee meetings hosted by Antares Vision in Brescia, Italy. Companies participating in the meeting in Brescia included: Abbott, ACG Inspection Systems, Advanco, Antares Vision, Arvato Systems, Beeond, Facilityboss, Mettler Toledo, OCS Checkweighers, Omron, OPC Foundation, Optel Vision, rfXcel, SAP, Sanofi, Systech, Teva, TraceLink, Uhlmann, and Werum.

    The major focus of the event was to align the objectives of all the companies participating as they work on developing and finalizing the functional end user specifications with the emphasis on developing a number of use cases describing how the serialization process shall work. It was a wonderful opportunity to watch competitors working together to achieve information serialization across the pharmaceutical industry.

    OPEN-SCS is a prime example of how the OPC Foundation works with other organizations to develop best-of-breed specifications that plug directly into the OPC UA infrastructure. The pharmaceutical companies selected the OPC UA technology primarily because of its platform independence, security, and the ability to have a complete information integration interoperability infrastructure.

    Please make sure that you take the opportunity to explore the OPC Foundation website and look at the myriad of collaborations that we are engaged in truly harmonizing and developing standards across industries and providing OPC UA as the solution for multivendor multiplatform secure reliable information integration interoperability.

    For more information on OPEN-SCS and how to get involved in this initiative go to:

    “RFID tomorrow 2017” – Auto ID

    The OPC Foundation is a partner of RFID tomorrow 2017

    “What good is the most innovative technology if it cannot communicate with other systems? Digitization and the IoT are a strong influence on the creation of future industrial processes today and thus generate a lot of uncertainty for companies. But even today, there are mature, standardized solutions,” underlines Stefan Hoppe, Global Vice President, OPC Foundation.

    Networking of all devices is progressing by leaps and bounds

    Time is of the essence. According to studies, in 2016 over 10 billion RFID tags have been sold. Until 2020, experts expect a growth in connected devices to up to 30 billion,depending on estimates. At RFID tomorrow 2017, important questions around secure data transfer in M2M communication will be discussed. As a partner, the OPC foundation will show efficient solutions at the event.

    Secure communication in the IoT – a key topic in 2017

    The secure data transfer in the IoT is one of the key topics in 2017. OPC UA will assume an important role in solving this challenge. With the companion specification for Auto ID devices, the OPC Foundation has shown how important a standardized technology for secure communication in an industrial environment is.

    There is no development without expert know-how

    The OPC Foundation will demonstrate the practical uses of OPC UA with live technology showcases. Numerous Auto ID devices by name manufacturers are already OPC UA ready and support system integrators and technology providers in taking the next step towards the IoT age. “Together with technology providers, integrators and industry associations, we work on optimal data modelling. That IT companies such as Microsoft and SAP, but also telecommunication companies like KETI (Korea) and Huawei (China) have joined the OPC Foundation shows the importance of the challenge. For the success of a safe M2M communication, expert know-how from different industries is indispensable,” Hoppe explains.

    For more information on OPEN-SCS and how to get involved in this initiative go to:…/aim-association-for-automatic-data-capture-identification-and-mobility

    IEC 61850 Companion Specification


    Supervision and Control Systems act in various fields of industrial activity, but in almost all cases an important part is dedicated to distribution of energy through a plant or an industrial process. Most of the time, energy in the form of electricity is generated and then supplied via an electrical distribution network before being consumed by electrical consumers.

    Interoperable Electric Network Management Systems (ENMS) are frequently required as electrical network components may be supplied by a large set of vendors. One of the main standards for electrical process is IEC 61850.  As described later in this document, IEC 61850 not only defines communication protocols; it defines, among other important features, a standardized data model with strong and unambiguous data semantics. The data model by itself conveys a large amount of information about the electrical aspect of an industrial plant.

    61850 — OPC UA Goals

    In order to have coordinated control over devices of many technological generations and designs within an industrial plant, gateways are often needed. A major challenge for these gateways is to be able to transfer information fully and accurately.

    While IEC 61850 is focused on electricity generation, transmission, distribution, and consumption, OPC UA is more and more used in non-electrical industrial process activities. It is clear that users require integration of the electrical aspects of a plant with non-electrical aspects.  This document is focused on defining what and how data is exchanged between these parts of an industrial plant.

    OPC UA’s modelling capabilities make it possible to transfer data between different systems without losing the semantics of data. Thus this companion specification document describes how IEC 61850 data can exchanged using OPC UA data modelling and services.

    Latest News

    The OPC UA – IEC 61850 companion specification will take benefit of the latest “IEC 61850 7-7 Machine-Processable Format” documentation produced by the IEC organization. This new enhancement will foster the maintainability of the companion specification and it will ensure good compliance after each update of source documentation, by allowing large automated updates.


    The document is will enter into final review process by Q1 2017. A release candidate will be reviewed for final approbation in Q2 2017.

    Working Group Member List

    •  4CE Industry
    • ABB
    • ARC Informatique
    • Ascolab
    • Beckhoff Automation
    • Beeond
    • Bernecker
    • CAS – DS Interoperability
    • GE
    • Grid Cloud Systems
    • Mitsubishi Electric
    • OFFIS
    • OPC Labs
    • OtaCo Engineering
    • Schneider Electric
    • Siemens
    • SISCO
    • Softing