OMAC Packaging Workgroup Announces Newly Developed PackML Implementation Guide
Research Triangle Park, NC (1 October 2009) - The OMAC Packaging Workgroup (OPW) has announced the development of the P&G PackML Implementation Guide. This implementation guide has been created to aid software developers in achieving a clean and efficient implementation of PackML.
Rob Aleksa, P&G corporate machine control section head, said, "Although the PackML standard exists, a well defined implementation approach has not yet been developed. P&G found many industry PackML implementations not very robust and often too complex. This frequently led to reworking the software, costing effort and money. So P&G developed efficient, robust software validated on a variety of machine systems. We decided to provide the software to industry, through OMAC, to drive a standard implementation approach. We want to ensure P&G and others get maximum benefit from the PackML standard."
In August, Procter & Gamble provided, to OMAC, a P&G PackML Implementation Guide along with the software and help files for an implementation on Rockwell's ControlLogix platform. The OPW group, after reviewing the guide, decided to adopt it and to encourage technology providers to develop example software that follows the guide.
OMAC Technical Director, Dave Bauman, said, "OPW is anticipating that the implementation of this guide and example software code will help accelerate the adoption of PackML by both users and machine builders. In fact, a number of other technology providers including B&R Automation, GE Fanuc, Kepware, Schneider Electric Elau Packaging Solutions, Siemens, and Wonderware are planning to develop example software code that will also be available for download on the OMAC website."
The PackML implementation guide and the example Rockwell software code developed by P&G will be made available for download from the OMAC website (www.omac.org) in November.
PackML, which stands for Packaging Machine Language, defines a common approach, or machine language, for automated machines. The primary goals are to encourage a common "look and feel" across a plant floor and to enable and encourage industry innovation. PackML was adopted as part of the ISA88 industry standard in August 2008.
PackML has been implemented by users and machine builders on a wide variety of control platforms. Those implementing PackML are realizing cost benefits of higher reliability, better supply chain integration, reduced engineering and training costs, and shorter project cycles.
OMAC—Organization for Machine Automation and Control—is the global organization for automation and manufacturing professionals that is dedicated to supporting the machine automation and operational needs of manufacturing. OMAC has about 500 members from end-user companies, OEM's, and technology providers and integrator companies, and currently operates three Working Groups: Packaging Machinery, Manufacturing Infrastructure, and Machine Tool. OMAC is a charter member of the Automation Federation (www.automationfederation.org). To learn more about OMAC, visit www.omac.org.