PROFIBUS Fieldbus Lab Devices
Frankfurt/Main ? May 15, 2006: PROFIBUS International (PI) is the first one of the large fieldbus organizations to specify a device profile specifically tailored to the demands of lab devices. This profile ? ?LabDevices? ? opens the door for the seamless integration of labs into PROFIBUS systems and also into other automation worlds by means of OPC. The profile was specified by a PROFIBUS working group consisting of manufacturers of lab devices and LIM systems and thematically supported by large users as well as organizations, such as Spectaris and the DIN standards committee. The work was completed a few days ago. Following an extensive review phase until the fall of 2006, the profile will be available as official standard for PROFIBUS and subsequently also for PROFINET.
Tightened regulations and quality expectations with simultaneous cost reductions require an increased automation of the work processes in industrial and research labs. Under this aspect, the standardization in the area of data collection and data communication gains a special importance. Today, the structure of this area is still very heterogeneous. LIM systems are used for the integrated recording and processing of data, but there are still no standards for a global standardization of these processes or data formats.
At the same time, labs and their workflows move ever closer to the actual production processes with the goal of a production monitoring and optimization as direct as possible. This is one more reason why users have a growing interest of seamlessly integrating the data collected in the lab into the dataflow of the entire company, as it is already done today with the data from production thanks to the seamless fieldbus technology. In other words: In the future, labs must be moved to the state-of-the-art automation technology, such as fieldbus, OPC or Ethernet, and networked with the data systems of the companies. PI creates the prerequisite for this seamless communication by means of its LabDevices device profile.