At embedded world 2018 OFFIS in its capacity as ICT center for industry 4.0 in lower saxony (IKIMUNI) shows a demonstration of its industry control reference platform “FAVIA” (Federated and Versatile Industry Automation).
The software part of FAVIA is based on standards IEC 61499 and OPC UA, while also supporting MQTT as widely used industrial IoT/cloud protocol. Using these, current challenges in production can be solved easier and more dynamically than with traditional industry control approaches. At the same time, industry standards enable seamless cooperation between devices of different vendors.
The hardware part of FAVIA uses a Xilinx Zynq chip that combines a traditional ARM dual-core processor with FPGA logic area. The processor part allows running a proven IEC 61499 runtime within an industry standard operating system. The multicore processor provides enough performance to provide edge controller functionality.
In addition, the FPGA fabric of the Zynq is well suited for application-specific accelerators, e.g. for computer vision or high-frequency (MHz scale) control with hard real-time guarantees. Finally, the programmable logic is also capable to adapt FAVIA devices to various high-speed communication protocols like PROFINET, EtherCAT, or Ethernet POWERLINK.
This combined hardware/software reference platform enables modern organisation of production processes. For example, our demonstration shows the ability to adapt to changes in work stations automatically. These changes could be additional work stations to address seasonal demand, or removal of stations for maintenance. Another common scenario is rearrangement of production facilities, ideally without interrupting production itself.
IKIMUNI, the ICT center for industry 4.0 in lower saxony provides advice and consulting for small and medium enterprises regarding all questions about information and communication technology. We offer advice, training, research cooperation, and protoype development in order to leverage the advantages that digitalisation can bring to your company.