Interactions on shop floor level like mobile maintenance operations are mainly impeded by dealing with heterogeneous machine interfaces. Initial machine integration need to be done individually for each machine type and afterwards, technical service personnel need specific training for each interface. Machine middleware systems like GAMMA V (http://www.rst-automation.de) or standards like OPC-UA have evolved to address this problem. The ComVantage approach allows the remote consumption of these systems over the web via a simplified and standardized interface to leverage machine data in business scenarios (e.g. cross-domain harmonization and interlinking of middleware resources). The interface is designed as a generic middleware adapter and was developed for 2 specific middleware solutions: GAMMA V and OPC UA. The Data Harmonization Middleware (DHM) adapter features semantic enrichment of middleware setups and machine interfaces to simplify remote access to machines for non-experts or automated agents. Direct business value is created by reduced training effort for technical staff with respect to multiple and complex machine interfaces. Maintenance operations, for instance, can be performed by lower skilled technicians that require help of experts only in very specific cases. Moreover, the use of standardized semantics to enrich interfaces allow the consumption by automated agents (e.g. for discovering relations between machines). When used in a data federation and harmonization architecture as described in result #1, the DHM adapter enables the evolvement of linked machine data networks to be leveraged in business contexts, e.g. manufacturing execution or predictive mobile maintenance systems.
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