Charlottesville, VA -- GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a unit of GE Enterprise Solutions, announced that its hardware and software products enable OMAC Make2Pack standards to support multiple vendor platforms for applications in both new and existing equipment. Capabilities within the company's PACSystems, QuickPanel View & Control, Proficy HMI/SCADA iFIX, and Proficy Operations Management Software products enable OMAC Make2Pack standards to improve machine flexibility, enable visibility at all levels—plant floor to enterprise—and allow for faster time to market and integration, ultimately providing a sustainable advantage to manufacturers worldwide.
"GE Fanuc understands that the OMAC Make2Pack standards will help OEMs and producers alike achieve cost and competitive advantages," said Linda Onnen, Global Market Director, Consumer & OEM for GE Fanuc. "Enabling the standards in our products delivers a strong positioning of open and layered solutions to packaging machinery builders and end users, which continues GE Fanuc's commitment as a complete solution provider that protects and enhances their investments. Open and layered is demonstrated in the ability of our operator interface, HMI/SCADA, and operations management solutions to apply OMAC Make2Pack Standards across multi-vendor platforms."
Integrating OMAC's PackML and Packtag standards into an automation solution reduces the burden of handshaking between PLCs on a coordinated line. The result: faster line rates can be maintained, and improved coordination can reduce the need for buffering conveyance and/or accumulators. Furthermore, these control-layer standards can actually reach well beyond the registers in a control system by reducing the "forensic" work needed to integrate machines on disparate platforms, PackTags and PackML lay the foundation to easily and consistently interpret the event data that resides in the controllers of packaging lines. And it is this data that powers the root cause analysis needed to identify and engineer out sources of inefficiencies.
According to John Blanchard, Research Director, ARC Advisory Group, "Standards such as the PackML state model and PackTags enable manufacturers to perform both horizontal and vertical integration of their packaging machines. For manufacturers to achieve this level of integration makes it important for automation suppliers such as GE Fanuc to recognize the benefits of the PackML state model and PackTags and to have incorporated those into their packaging operations management software, as well as their PACSystems controller platforms. Packaging operations have grown increasingly more important in helping manufacturers improve their plant performance and supply chain efficiency, enabling access to information that is critical to their business growth, especially during these globally turbulent economic times."
"Now more then ever packaging OEMs are demanding products that enable ease of use and rapid deployment at less cost," Onnen said. "OMAC PackML and PackTags standards position us to deliver open and layered solutions to all of our packaging machinery and end user customers and provide them with a sustainable advantage for their business. We have enabled the OMAC's PackML and PackTags packaging standards into our automation products to help machine builders and end users achieve standards compatibility and improve machine flexibility, capability, and marketability."
The open and layered approach that GE Fanuc products offer provide customers with multi-vendor connectivity, lower engineering costs, lower capital costs, faster time to development and market, and the ability to start small and grow as needed. Manufacturers enjoy more visibility into the packaging area, better control of their manufacturing, ultimately leading to continuous improvement. It also allows companies to drive commonality in their machine control and machine interfaces.
GE Fanuc has teamed with OMAC to drive standards since 2007 and was recently named co-chair to the OMAC Packaging Work Group.
The GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms white paper "Using Controls Standards to Accelerate Continuous Improvement Initiatives: OMAC's PACKML and PackTags Provide Consistency and Repeatability in Performance Analysis Regimens" is available on the company's Web site.
About GE Fanuc
GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a joint venture between General Electric and Fanuc Ltd. of Japan, is a high-performance technology company and a global provider of hardware, software, services, expertise, and experience in automation and embedded computing, with products employed in virtually every industry, including manufacturing automation, process automation, defense, automotive, telecommunications, healthcare, and aerospace. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms is a worldwide company headquartered in Charlottesville, VA, and is part of GE Enterprise Solutions.