OPC UA Functions

PLCopen OPC UA Function Blocks Simplify Sensor to Enterprise, Cloud, & Internet Communications

The Internet of Things, Industrial Internet of Things, Industry 4.0, and Smart Factory applications are growing and implementation is simplified with PLCopen OPC UA function blocks.   Open industry standards improve automation system device interoperability. These new PLCopen standards simplifying sensor to enterprise, cloud, and Internet communications with PLCopen web services function blocks based on the OPC UA standard.  Today there are many vendor centric unique data exchange protocols that do NOT offer interoperability to transport information between controllers, systems, enterprise, and the cloud.  The PLCopen OPC UA function standards are a universal, secure and reliable network communication method in IEC 61131-3 based systems.  This enables frictionless and out-of-the box information exchange based on computer industry standards.

More Technical Details: Technical Committee TC4 – Communications

The technical specifications version 1.0, are available for downloading:
OPC UA Information Model for IEC 61131-3
OPC UA Client Function Blocks for IEC 61131-3


More Information
PLCopen Pack Expo 2014 FINAL Press Confernece
PLCopen – OPC UA Business Value
Press Release PACKEXPO2014 – PLCopen Press Briefing
PLCopen OPC-UA Client FUNCTION BLOCKS Specification
PLCopen Motion Control and OMAC PackAL – a good combination
PLCopen Mapping of PackML State diagram_V7

For More Information Contact:  Bill Lydon   blydon@PLCopen-NA.org      Cell 414-704-5004

Controller to Controller
PLCopen OPC UA function blocks are also defined for direct machine to machine communications between multiple vendor controllers to coordinate automation that has never been available before in the industry. These are important functions to achieve the goals of Industry 4.0, Industrial Internet of Things, and Smart Factory applications to improve manufacturing efficiency and productivity.  These new function blocks simplify the integration of production, process control, packaging, and other machines into new efficient system architectures.

PLCopen and the OPC Foundation joined forces in 2008 to combine their technologies to a platform and manufacturer-independent information and communication architecture. A combined working group was started, focused to the mix of OPC Unified Architecture (UA) and IEC 61131-3, which creates interesting options for the realization of automation structures. The objective of the combined technologies is to increase the efficiency of the engineering process and information exchange.

The IEC 61131-3 software model has been mapped by PLCopen to the OPC UA information model creating a PLCopen standard to communicate information.  The first phase of this was demonstrated at the SPS/IPC/Drives 2009 in Nuremberg, Germany.