Gateway to Industrial Interoperability

Feb. 18, 2008
Access the world of OPC with the FactoryTalk Gateway from Rockwell and OPC connectivity suites from MatrikonOPC.
Reliable access to all the manufacturing data distributed throughout the enterprise is crucial to improving business processes. In order for successful manufacturers to become more agile and productive, they must have the ability to get data to the right people in the proper form. OPC provides the standardized data access and the FactoryTalk Gateway opens the door to truly integrated production and performance. Integrated and interoperableThe FactoryTalk Integrated Production & Performance Suite, from Rockwell Automation’s Rockwell Software business, offers applications that focus on plant information needs and a full range of manufacturing disciplines. These span Design and Configuration applications for creating and modeling production processes, to Production Management applications for handling tasks such as order scheduling, tracking and interactive manufacturing process control.Performance and Visibility applications, such as user interfaces, reporting, and analysis tools, provide the window into the process needed for quality decision-making. The suite also provides Asset Management applications for maintenance, with plant operation tasks benefiting Quality and Compliance environments as they ensure companies adhere to established standards throughout an entire process. Data Management tools are needed to access, collect and transform production information. This includes integrating data from a variety of third-party sources, as well as providing information to applications in the enterprise. The FactoryTalk Gateway achieves this system-wide interoperability using OPC.Opens up a world of optionsCertified OPC products provide seamless information integration across the enterprise. The FactoryTalk Gateway provides a secure window into all FactoryTalk applications, and it also provides a unified OPC interface for serving data across the FactoryTalk Suite. Most common are third-party control devices such as distributed control systems (DCSs), programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and remote terminal units (RTUs).Critical real time data can also be located in historians, maintenance applications and building control systems. The interoperable client-server architecture of OPC means the FactoryTalk Gateway is a robust information conduit for countless, industrial strength OPC products. OPC solutions from MatrikonOPC, based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, serve as good examples of the wide range of industrial-strength OPC-certified products available for connectivity:MatrikonOPC PLC and Telemetry Connectivity Suites—Integrate FactoryTalk applications with legacy or third-party hardware such as GE, Siemens and Motorola systems. OPC servers are also available for common protocols like Modbus, DNP 3.0 and IEC 60870, as well as Triconex Safety systems.MatrikonOPC DCS Connectivity Suite—DCS systems often require considerable hardware investment when they need to be replaced. OPC connectivity to systems from vendors such as Honeywell, ABB and Emerson, or specialty equipment like GE Mark V turbine controls, ensures the FactoryTalk Gateway has all the access it requires without hardware changes.MatrikonOPC Historian Connectivity Suite—Business Information Systems rely on vital data stored in process historians such as those from Honeywell, AspenTech, and others. Countless applications also archive data in relational databases such as Oracle, Microsoft SQL, and other ODBC-compliant systems. Bridge the information gapIn addition to standardized OPC connectivity to countless data sources, the FactoryTalk Gateway allows access to data in FactoryTalk View Site Edition and optimized communication to Rockwell Automation’s ControlLogix systems via one unified interface. In conjunction with FactoryTalk Live Data and FactoryTalk Directory, the FactoryTalk Gateway provides redundancy to human-machine interface (HMI) and data servers. Troubleshooting and system auditing is also simplified by allowing all diagnostic and audit messages to be stored in one central database. Combining key diagnostic messages with integrated viewing tools means FactoryTalk Gateway provides a powerful tool for reviewing the current state of all FactoryTalk applications, including the OPC server.Having the speed and agility to make the right decisions is what sets pacesetter manufacturers at the front of the pack. The competitive edge comes from being able to make informed decisions based on real-time data from the process. This requires fully integrated, scalable solutions that provide manufacturers with the insight and performance to optimize production, respond more quickly to demands and reduce costs. The tight integration of FactoryTalk Live Data with quality MatrikonOPC servers gives FactoryTalk applications access to a broad range of information, enabling users to extend their production systems to include more information. FactoryTalk Gateway-integrated MatrikonOPC client tools provide more options for applications that require scaling, calculations or combining values.For more information, visit

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