Prosys OPC has been an active member of the OPC Foundation since 1999. We also joined Open Industry 4.0 Alliance in 2020 since we see the organizations complementing each other. Whereas OPC Foundation focuses on defining standards, Open Industry 4.0 looks at industrial use cases and provides a platform for vendors to streamline their offerings on a larger scale using standards.

OPC Unified Architecture (OPC UA, IEC 62541) is a standard technology that enables industrial equipment and applications to communicate together in a secure and reliable way, eventually enabling Plug & Produce in practice.

OPC UA defines standard Client/Server and Publisher/Subscriber communication models that are suitable for exchanging manufacturing data and calling services between different components and applications. It is not limited to manufacturing, though, since, in practice, it just defines standard ways to read and write variables, call methods, and organize data objects using semantic models. It also defines standard security mechanisms to enable trust between applications and encryption of all communication.

Open Industry 4.0 (OI4) has defined a Reference Architecture and guidelines for Edge and Cloud connectivity using common communication models. The Development Guideline for Open Edge Computing (OEC Guideline) is extending the OPC UA PubSub communication protocol with additional, use case specific data structures, such as Master Asset Model (mam), Device Health (health) and Overall Equipment Efficiency (oee).