From my smartphone, I can do anything from making coffee to adjusting my home thermostat. This wave of appliances and other physical devices connecting and communicating through a network is known as the Internet of Things and it’s playing a crucial role in industry. With the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) we can now monitor PLC data without ever intruding on the PLC. Let’s take a look at how I implemented PLC tags on a web application.
The first step is to download OPC UA historian software. OPC UA stands for Open Platform Communications Unified Architecture. OPC is a client/server communication standard that was made as a gateway between the PLC and a Windows PC. The UA was added as an upgrade that allowed communication across other operating systems such as Linux and iOS along with other added functionality improvements. Once this software is running and the PLC and PC are communicating, we can work on hosting that data.
With smart IO-Link sensors on our conveyor I was able to look at diagnostic and functional data in the PLC and setup an interactive screen at the conveyor for viewing production and maintenance information.
And now I can even check my sensor outputs with the same smartphone that just made my coffee and adjusted my office’s temperature.
You can learn more about the Industrial Internet of Things at www.balluff.us.