Optimization of Machine Integration (OMI™) 

Industry frequently talks about machinery using the concepts of things as discussed in the industrial internet of things. Since a thing can be many things, it is helpful to think of things in a hierarchy. Using this hierarchical model, Optimization of Machine Integration (OMI™) views machinery as being part of the levels for equipment modules, units and cells.

Based on this view, realization of OMI requires a three-pronged approach for use by the industrial consumer: (1) communication connectivity; (2) machine-to-supervisory communication; and (3) machine-to-machine communication. ODVA’s approach for OMI originates from the key challenges faced by machine builders and manufacturers when looking to integrate machines. These challenges include: 

  1. There is a proliferation of automation networks in machine automation. 

  2. The useful life of machine assets is long, which results in many installations with legacy networks. 

  3. Machine builders are motivated to provide a high-value machine that is differentiated from their competition on price and performance relative to asset turnover, not overall equipment effectiveness. 

  4. To maintain machines, manufacturers need to give OEMs secure, remote access to the information that is being shared from machine-to-machine, as well as from the machines to supervisory systems including line control, MES and enterprise applications. 



Use Case Type 1:  Machine-to-Machine Communication

Machine-to-machine communication is the foundation of OMI. Establishing standards will help minimize the time and cost of machine integration and reduce the custom software and special hardware needed to integrate different vendors' equipment together. By sharing a unified integration model for key functions needed for machines to interoperate with one another — including command, configure and control — along with a common data model to communicate key machine attributes, machine builders and manufacturers will find machines from multiple vendors and design cycles to be easier, faster and cheaper to integrate.

Use Case Type 2:  Machine-to-Supervisory Communication

Communication between machines and supervisory systems is the accelerant for OMI. By leveraging line controllers and manufacturing execution systems (MES), manufacturers can consolidate and exchange machine information across systems to collect production data, assist in asset management, and report diagnostics and alarms. This machine monitoring and management helps reduce downtime by promoting efficient utilization and multiplies the benefits of machine integration by automating actions that improve overall equipment effectiveness. OMI allows existing automation to incorporate the functionality needed to realize new efficiencies in machinery utilization, thus protecting the user’s investment in technology. 


Use Case Type 3:  Communication Connectivity

Connectivity is the enabler for OMI. Machinery in the industrial ecosystem is characterized by multiple heterogeneous networks connected to multiple physical domains both inside and outside the manufacturer’s enterprise. By leveraging common standards for physical media, network infrastructure and secure remote access, both users and machine builders will be able to reduce the cost and complexity of machine integration while improving maintainability and safety of machines. As reliability is also essential, the OMI approach will define how communication gets handled when machinery is unavailable.

In its activities aimed at evolving this approach to OMI, ODVA is collaborating with two alliance partners — OPC Foundation and Sercos International — to facilitate resolution of these challenges. The primary focus of this collaboration is the development of common data models and methods of data exchange with supervisory systems. To gain a more complete understanding of ODVA’s vision of OMI, read Optimization of Machine Integration: A Shared Vision for Machinery Integration in the Manufacturing Sector

1 Source of Level Terminology: ANSI/ISA-88.00.01-2010 Batch Control Part 1: Models and Terminology.