FDT Group Advances Digital Transformation With FDT 3.0 Standard and ToolkitsJune 15, 2020 by Stephanie Leonida
The FDT group brings renovation to automation architectures for businesses worldwide through its new FDT-based IIoT technology.
FDT and Digitization
The FDT Group is a non-profit comprised of a global community of companies with a combined vision of improvement in industrial automation. The company works in developing universal network/device integration and asset management.
The company employs state-of-the-art digitization solutions through FDT-based technology to innovate the connection and communication of automation architectures in process, factory, and hybrid manufacturing. Recently, the company announced the release of its platform-independent FDT 3.0 – FDT IIoT Server (FITS) standard.
Moving Towards Industry 4.0
The new FDT 3.0 standard is designed for Industry 4.0 applications. The FDT server is the only open platform, standardized integration architecture that provides users with a single interface with cloud-to-plant floor mobile access. The latest FDT 3.0 standard server ensures that data availability is at its core, allowing businesses access to a wealth of platform data for consumption. Mobile and remote access are offered and the server is designed to be scalable, secure, and compatible with other systems and standards.
The new FITS standard enables users to remotely access devices and collects information regarding their health status, as well as allowing for remote configuration in line with the appropriate security privileges. The new FDT standard is now web-client based as opposed to previous models. Earlier servers were available as a single-user desktop environment (FDT 1.x) or multi-user client/server approach (FDT 2.x), while the latest version 3.0 provides universal device integration and data accessibility.
Developers can either utilize the OPC UA server within the Server Common Components or exchange for their server of choice. The integrated server provides control engineers with the capability of utilizing a publish-subscribe environment for real-time exchange of data. OPC UA client/server-authenticated access to plant application data is also offered to users. The FITS core server serves as the IIoT data hub and incorporates device type manager (DTM) user interfaces and business logic.
FITS Solutions Architecture Diagram. Image used courtesy of The FDT Group.
The FITS solution incorporates a single device type manager (DTM) repository through the FDThub. This is designed for cloud-based and on-premise air-gapped system deployment, enabling quick access to all certified DTMs.
The solution also has an integrated mobile device management interface, as well as useful apps to help optimize maintenance efficiency. Security is ensured through encrypted communication using transport layer security (TLS). These are just some of the features and benefits of the FITS solution.
In addition to the release of the new server solution, FDT released developer toolkits to help customers kick-start the development of their automotive processes with an integrated development environment (IDE). With the toolkit at hand, the automotive community can design and create bespoke next-generation, cross-platform FDT 3.0 solutions.