Industrial network communications

OPC UA on a Raspberry Pi

© Lead Image © donatas1205, 123RF.com

© Lead Image © donatas1205, 123RF.com

Article from Issue 258/2022
Author(s):

Use Python and Node-RED to create an industrial client-server test system.

Industrial operations such as chemical refineries, power plants, and mineral processing operations have different network communications requirements than most IT installations. Some of the key industrial communication requirements include security, multivendor connectivity, time stamping of data, and alarm or quality indicators.

To meet industrial requirements, a communications standard called OLE for Process Control (OPC) [1] was created. The original OPC design was based on Microsoft's Object Linking and Embedding (OLE) technology, and it quickly became the standard for communications between control system consoles, historians (data storage devices), and third-party applications (Figure 1).

Figure 1: Typical plant OPC architecture.

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