Editor's Choice

Visualisation system sets new standards

October 2022 Editor's Choice SCADA/HMI

Representing a comprehensive system for industrial operator control and monitoring, Siemens offers a visualisation system consisting of the Simatic WinCC Unified visualisation software and Simatic HMI Unified Comfort Panels. The system provides the user with a comprehensive solution for HMI and scada applications, and in the future also for industrial edge, cloud and augmented reality scenarios. The latest version (V18) will be shown at this year’s SPS Fair from 8-10 November in Nuremberg, Germany (www.siemens.com/sps-fair).

The runtime of the Simatic WinCC Unified visualisation software in the TIA (Totally Integrated Automation) Portal uses web technologies such as HTML5, SVG and JavaScript. The high scalability of the platform enables end-to-end solutions from machine-level applications all the way to the scada system.

When designing the system, Siemens focused on its overall openness. For this purpose, open API interfaces such as TIA Portal Openness were implemented, which enable automated engineering on the one hand, and considerably simplify data exchange during operation on the other hand. For this, a runtime API and an OpenPipe interface are available to the user, as well as the option to integrate other applications into the user interface of WinCC Unified, for custom web control.

Engineering is consistently integrated in the TIA Portal, an engineering framework with modern programming languages and seamless data flow. Components created once can be reused on all platforms, for consistent usability on the operator panel, the PC or during remote access using a web browser. WinCC Unified Runtime can be accessed via all modern Internet browsers without the installation of separate plug-ins, and each Unified Comfort Panel or PC runtime offers secure access for one user to remote operation and monitoring without extra costs. Version 18, set to be released in November 2022, will boast further features in the areas of standardisation, libraries, versioning, new operational concepts for multitouch operation and new interfaces for OT/IT integration.

Simatic HMI Unified Comfort Panels are available in display sizes from 7 to 22 inches, have a glass front with capacitive multitouch technology, and offer users in the industrial environment a high degree of usability that is similar to the operation of a smartphone or tablet. High brilliance in colours and contrast improve readability and operability.

Visualisation on the devices is based on Simatic WinCC Unified and brings many possibilities to the devices: Dynamic SVG (scalable vector graphics), extensive UI controls and ‘collaboration’ – a convenient mechanism for sharing screens or alarms between WinCC Unified stations.

The functional expansion possibilities through apps represent a paradigm shift in the Simatic HMI panel portfolio. While the HMI panels were used exclusively for the visualisation software in the past, with the integrated edge functionality, Siemens now gives users the possibility to also operate other apps on the devices at the same time.


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