Rockwell Automation adds industry-specific applications to FactoryTalk

  • November 19, 2008
  • Rockwell Automation
  • Rockwell Automation

November 19, 2008 - Rockwell Automation expanded its FactoryTalk Integrated Production and Performance Suite to support a new generation of industry-specific applications for the automotive, CPG and pharmaceutical industries. The platform now includes configuration tools and capabilities designed to help manufacturers reduce deployment costs and time.The FactoryTalk platform leverages a service-oriented architecture (SOA) for cost-effective, flexible, plant-wide integration to legacy systems. Its object-oriented design makes it easier to build and modify applications, as well as roll them out across multiple sites in a consistent form – ultimately helping to establish best practices for manufacturing operations and regulatory requirements in discrete, hybrid and process industries.The industry-specific applications include a new workflow engine that allows a business process management (BPM) approach to implementing operational improvements by introducing an agile and flexible capacity for managing change. For example, a contract manufacturer can dynamically manage workflow changes associated with cross-organizational customer order procedures. Reconfigured manual or automated execution processes are then reflected within the current instance of the application. In addition, the FactoryTalk industry applications incorporate a new user interface into the presentation layer to provide task-based, operator-workflow views. This makes it easier to direct and shape what the operator is performing on the shop floor for maximum efficiency and repeatability. These visual panels also assist in role-based activity definition and management.FactoryTalk Pharma Suite, the first of the series to be launched, comes as a pre-validated software package comprised of standardized weigh-and-dispense workflows. It includes a rich set of user interfaces, work order management, work-in-process tracking and inventory management. While it can be used as a stand-alone system, FactoryTalk Pharma Suite is designed with pre-defined interface scenarios for simplified integration with enterprise resource planning and other business systems, like laboratory information management systems (LIMS).In addition to weigh and dispense features, future versions of FactoryTalk Pharma Suite will include such activities as electronic batch recording, corrective action/preventive action (CAPA) management, scheduling integration and comprehensive validation documentation. Future releases on the FactoryTalk platform also will include industry-specific applications for food, beverage and automotive manufacturers, as well as key production execution and performance management features for faster time-to-value and mobilization across discrete, hybrid and process industries. “For many manufacturers, developing, implementing and monitoring customized production execution software can be difficult to cost justify and maintain,” said Darren Riley, market development manager, Software and Applications, Rockwell Automation. “Our platform-based applications leverage reusable vertical ‘libraries’ of capabilities and activities to provide manufacturers with configurable, off-the-shelf software to help meet their industry-specific needs. Solutions based on industry best practices for operational and enterprise process workflows not only help reduce total cost of ownership and deployment times, they also support and enable strategic enterprise initiatives, such as lean manufacturing, real-time operations and asset performance management.”Rockwell Automation Inc. (NYSE: ROK) is a leading global provider of industrial automation power, control and information solutions that help manufacturers achieve a competitive advantage for their businesses. The company brings together leading global brands in industrial automation that include Allen-Bradley controls and services, and Rockwell Software factory management software. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wis., the company employs about 20,000 people serving customers in more than 80 countries.

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