MTConnect and OPC to Update MTConnect OPC UA Companion Specification

MTConnect Institute and OPC Foundation to Update and Revise MTConnect OPC UA Companion Specification

The MTConnect Institute and the OPC Foundation have formed a Joint Working Group (JWG) to update and revise the MTConnect-OPC UA (Unified Architecture) Companion specification. “The existing MTConnect-OPC UA companion specification established a uniform information model for integrating the two standards,” said Tim Shinbara, Secretary of the MTConnect Institute and Vice President of Technology at AMT–The Association For Manufacturing Technology.

“Both standards have been enthusiastically embraced in the industry, and a shared philosophy of interoperable standards is more important now than ever.”

Stefan Hoppe
Stefan Hoppe
Global Vice President
Verl, Germany
Thomas J. Burke
Thomas J. Burke
President & Executive Director
Ravenna, Ohio, USA

The MTConnect communications standard enables manufacturing equipment to provide structured, contextualized data with no proprietary format. The OPC UA standard provides secure, reliable, high-speed communications, developed as a collaboration of the leading worldwide automation suppliers. The OPC Unified Architecture (UA), released in 2008, is a platform independent service-oriented architecture that integrates all the functionality of the individual OPC Classic specifications into one extensible framework.

“The MTConnect-OPC UA companion standard will allow the extensive existing information model provided by MTConnect to be leveraged by existing OPC UA Systems at the enterprise level,” said Tom Burke, OPC Foundation President and Executive Director.

The MTConnect Institute and OPC Foundation have had a memorandum of understanding in place since September 2010, which was revised in January 2018 to reflect the Joint Working Group. The joint working group creates a robust mechanism for OPC and MTConnect to extend the reach of the existing manufacturing data exchange standards, information models, and implementation technologies.

Manufacturers have begun to rapidly embrace open, standards-based communication architectures for factory data, which in turn drove demand for the companion specification.

“This revision will expand and update the shared, uniform information model to reflect updates to the two standards,” said Paul Hunkar, President of DSInteroperability and co-chairman of the JWG.