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Design News, May 2013

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Cover Story prime application for smartphones. "If we look at production and quality management, applications move more into the tablet world," Fischbach said. "The production quality manager can go to a machine and analyze in the palm of his hand the quality of the product produced at the time. If companies make more complex machines, they often embed a standard PC as an HMI and use LabVIEW and the Wind River real-time operating system to create their control system." At the highest level, users are developing a machine control or machine management PC, and then additional solutions targeting the tablet and smartphone.All of these three use cases can be addressed with Open Core because it is scalable. Companies often use Visual Studio and other software development tools, along with the SDKs, which also makes it possible for customers to actually load their own real-time core into the Bosch Rexroth control. A design goal is to address the efficiency of users creating solutions, mak- current direction is switching to standard communication using a span of tools like Eclipse, Xcode, Visual Studio, or LabVIEW. Using the SDK, the user gains easy access to all of the available system variables, calls, and functionality that can be automatically uploaded into the development tool. With OPC, someone needs to create variable maps or import maps, and there is a lot of work required to achieve this level of connectivity. Mobile Web Apps Another approach to creating mobile or Web apps has been developed by Opto 22. This solution uses what is called a groov network appliance to interface with the machine control network in a plant, and an integrated set of tools that make it easy for users to develop their own mobile applications. "We are calling groov at a highest level an HDI, or human device interface, because the human is interfacing with any device, any screen size, and any Web browser," Ben Orchard, an applications engineer at Opto 22, told Design News. "It's more about the human to the device interface, rather than how the device interfaces the process or the machine." Orchard said it is a subtle difference but it affects design and layout, and highlights how this approach is different comThe groov view apps for iOS and Android allow smartpared to using convenphone and tablet users to easily display customized tional HMIs. The result screens of process data. is that this new product ing it open to the future by using open represents a new approach to using standards. The development kits offer mobile apps or Web apps as an operator greater flexibility, so users can pick tools interface. they are used to working with and the The groov system consists of two solutions can be customized to a ma- parts: the box and the groov apps which chine builder's requirements. consist of groov Build for building In the past, machine builders devel- screens and groov View where customoped their own PC-based control but ers would look at screens they have dethen communicated using a field bus veloped and data on their process -- plus such as PROFIBUS, DeviceNet, or a Groov view apps for iOS and Android very specific Ethernet protocol. But devices. now with mobile devices in the mix, the To build mobile-ready, server-centric Source: Opto 22 real-time applications and run them on the Bosch Rexroth control, there is an ability to communicate with machine or motion controllers typically using Wind River Workbench Real-time or VxWorks. "That is the part of the efficiency and software engineering goal that we try to address with Open Core," said Fischbach."We try to address future availability of the solution. Many manufacturers implement their own solutions, but we try to work with open standards and use an open automation platform." The strategy enables machinery builders and system integrators writing application software to build a new level of software support tools for their machines using mobile devices. And the unique part of the approach is that the tools enable users to reach into the core software within the automation system. In the past, machines typically had a PLC controlling a series of motors and applications running in production. But today, quality and productivity has become more important. So the machine builder wants machine information available on the machine control system, which is often PC-based but could also be a mobile device. The goal is for the operators to see and analyze process, quality, and production-related data. Usually a PLC, motion controller, or standard HMI on a machine doesn't have those capabilities, or it is more difficult to add charting and graphing functions. Users want to get a higher level of information out of the machine. Fischbach said that both smartphones and tablets are each finding different roles and applications. For maintenance and life cycle management, smartphones are being used more because usually the maintenance people have a smartphone as they move around the plant. Some users may want to know about the lubrication cycle, for example, or many different types of preventative maintenance information. Some preventative maintenance information is embedded into the control and is a Design News | MAY 2013 | w w w. d e s i g n n e w s . c o m –36– magenta cyan yellow black ES246212_DN1305_036.pgs 05.03.2013 22:05 UBM

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