Digital technologies have been part of the production and automation world for several years. In the past, automation was shaped by field buses, some of which were proprietary. Typical applications were primarily isolated solutions with limited communication options. Achieving the transparency of the entire production situation was tedious and associated with considerable, sometimes manual, efforts.

Today, standardized network technologies and communication standards such as Ethernet, Profinet and OPC-UA are implemented in the industry, which leads to ever greater integration into the company’s IT systems. For example, data from the production systems are fed back into the planning or customer systems, or vice versa, orders are digitally passed on to the production systems. The connection to file servers, databases, e-mail and messaging services, domain controllers, time synchronization systems and other digital services that we know from IT …


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