Interconnecting systems: the road to more efficient digital production

The interconnection of systems is one of the most important factors for the digitization of production processes, which responds to specific integration requirements. In particular, current demand focuses on the best ways to obtain enhanced production automation and constant process monitoring, but also on the need for prompt availability of accurate data on machinery operation, efficiency and consumption. Last but not least, we want to have any critical issues under control, so that they can be targeted, prevented or resolved promptly and specifically.

cLink: the exchange of information is bidirectional

With this in mind, we have developed a software that allows the exchange of information between Cefla Finishing machines/lines and the IT systems available within the company. This software is cLink.

cLink is highly versatile in terms of both the wide range of procedures and protocols available for data exchange (such as SQL Database, OPC UA, text files, etc.), and its applicability at various automation levels, ranging from individual machines all the way to the most complex lines, equipped with advanced control systems, such as our line supervisor cTracker. Individual machines today can already display statistical operational productivity data, real time operating data and also alarm event lists.

In more complex lines, cLink is a software module linked to cTracker which allows for bidirectional exchange of information between the line and the ERP system available within the company. Additionally, if on the one hand cLink can obtain from internal systems all the necessary data relating to the production orders to be processed, including data for the development of line recipes, on the other hand, it can deliver the processing data of packages/batches once these have completed their progress along the Cefla Finishing line.

The basic information that is exchanged relates to:

  • batch input list (from the company);
  • package output list with batch indication (from Cefla machines);
  • line data tracking (from the Cefla line);

Technically speaking, what does this imply?

Technically speaking, there are two ways to exchange data between the customer's management software and the tracking system:

  1. SQL Server database through tables, with SQL Server resident on client system;
  2. via text file, with 'TXT' or 'CSV' extension.
Each implementation of cLink is highly customised according to specific customer needs and is validated by specifications regarding the objectives, the scope of the implementation, the list of tables exchanged and information read/write logics.

This is why we can offer a customised project which, backed by the industry-specific expertise of Cefla Finishing's staff, will assist customers and their integrators towards concrete interconnection of information along the production chain.

Learn more