Rockwell Automation Expands FactoryTalk ProductionCentre Application Development Capabilities
New version features reusable modules and new work-flow engine to help speed application development and reduce costs
MILWAUKEE. — Rockwell Automation has expanded the application development capabilities of its FactoryTalk ProductionCentre software to help users more rapidly and cost-efficiently build, deploy and scale manufacturing production applications across multiple sites. FactoryTalk ProductionCentre delivers comprehensive production management functionality, and advanced decision support tools. This combination helps manufacturers’ track and control production, reduce cycle times and excess inventory, analyze root cause and failures, and manage factory or field repair orders.
The expanded capabilities include a new work-flow engine that helps users build and configure applications based on reusable modules, and create tasks and workflows using simple visual tools. This powerful addition helps operations staff to determine how information should be presented in the user interface, and makes it possible to configure business logic for specific tasks – all without the need to write software code. Allowing FactoryTalk ProductionCentre users to “own” the business process descriptions helps reduce development costs and speeds application deployment.
“The need for greater agility and responsiveness in manufacturing execution is driving manufacturers away from complex legacy systems to more standardized, commercial, off-the-shelf technology,” said Kevin Roach, vice present of Software, Rockwell Automation. “FactoryTalk ProductionCentre has been designed to help meet that demand. It’s a secure, configurable and scalable platform with a proven ability to integrate production management across a single site or an entire multisite enterprise.”
The FactoryTalk ProductionCentre workflow engine provides a new framework for developing, extending and deploying applications. It leverages the FactoryTalk Services Platform, a service-oriented architecture (SOA) for improved plant-wide integration, making it easier to build and modify applications, as well as roll them out across multiple sites.
“Many of today’s customized manufacturing systems lack the flexibility to integrate and collaborate between applications,” said Greg Gorbach, vice president, Collaborative Manufacturing, ARC Advisory Group. “FactoryTalk ProductionCentre uses the FactoryTalk common services architecture, which allows applications to discover, connect and share real-time data in a secure, scalable manner. This puts manufacturers in the best position to reap the benefits of plant-wide integration.”
This new version of FactoryTalk ProductionCentre also supports the latest J2EE infrastructure from IBM – the IBM WebSphere Enterprise Service Bus built on WebSphere Application Server for an integrated SOA platform, resulting in increased plant flexibility. The Rockwell Automation relationship with IBM in support of this technology helps strengthen the alignment of FactoryTalk ProductionCentre around the enterprise SOA for manufacturing.
The FactoryTalk suite delivers distinct business benefits across six production disciplines common to most manufacturing operations – FactoryTalk ProductionCentre is part of the production management discipline. FactoryTalk applications are designed for tight integration with the Rockwell Automation Logix Control Platform, as well as extensive connectivity to third-party and legacy systems.
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