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Lemgo, 11. October 2012 14:27 Age: 2 Jahr/e

The world’s smallest OPC-UA server comes from Germany

Communicate direct with machines using the Smartphone. This is made possible by the world’s smallest OPC interface that comes from Germany.

Not only do microelectronic components have to become smaller in the Internet of Things of the future, this being the networking and interaction of machines, devices and everyday objects, an additional decisive factor is a suitable communication interface. While technologies such as Ethernet, WLAN or Bluetooth have become broadly established on the physical level, the software integration is becoming increasing complicated due to the interface diversity. The CENTRUM INDUSTRIAL IT (CIIT) in Germany has now found a far-reaching solution: researchers from the Lemgo institute Industrial IT (inIT) at the Ostwestfalen-Lippe – University of Applied Sciences have succeeded in creating the world’s smallest OPC interface, which communicates with the user direct via a control module, Smartphone or a tablet.

In the past, the use of OPC-UA servers was restricted to embedded systems with an adequate memory size, but it is now possible to also communicate with microchips. The smallest OPC-UA server was developed under the leadership of Professor Dr. Jürgen Jasperneite, Head of Fraunhofer Application Center Industrial Automation (IOSB-INA) and the inIT. The basis for this is the “Nano Embedded Device Server Profile“ from the OPC Foundation – binary transport profiles are used and the authentification with the assistance of certificates is also supported. Merely 15 kilobytes RAM and 10 kilobytes ROM are required for the server function with a maximum of four services. “As far as we are aware, this is one of the smallest OPC-UA servers in the world. This enables a simple software integration to be carried out from the simplest devices to the Internet of Things”, said Professor Jasperneite. The researchers now want to implement their experiences in the “OPC-UA for Devices (DI)“ specification.

“With OPC-UA, we have a very scalable solution available, which enables an abstraction from physical communication technology and provides the software applications with a generic interface“, continued Professor Jasperneite. In the meantime, there are numerous OPC-UA implementations available, including for Smartphones.