Title: Integration and adoptability of APs: the role of ISO TC184/SC4 standards

Authors: Ricardo Jardim-Goncalves, Adolfo Steiger-Garcao

Addresses: Departamento de Engenharia Electrotecnica da Faculdade de Ciencias e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, UNINOVA CRI: Centro de Robotica Inteligente, Quinta da Torre, 2825 Monte de Caparica, Portugal. Departamento de Engenharia Electrotecnica da Faculdade de Ciencias e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, UNINOVA CRI: Centro de Robotica Inteligente, Quinta da Torre, 2825 Monte de Caparica, Portugal

Abstract: Automatic data exchange among computer applications in industrial domains is an issue that has been largely worked out by the scientific and industrial community during last years. In the scope of the several industrial activities, the lack of tools and structured data models ready to be adopted to enable immediate connection of applications in networked-based environments is one of the main gaps identified when seeking global integrated solutions. ISO TC184/SC4 standards (e.g. STEP and PLib) seem ready to aid solving this problem, and the adoption of such standards has been opening new possibilities in this area, fulfilling most of the identified requirements. To support those standards, applications must be prepared with suitable mechanisms and interfaces easily adaptable for fast and reliable plug-and-play in the standard-based architecture, to accomplish the foreseen Open Platforms. Therefore, data modelling, data share and exchange, reuse of models, automatic code generators and software libraries, together with the possibility to incorporate expertise and knowledge representation, is a challenge to face when working in environments supported by heterogeneous platforms and concepts, as is the case. Nevertheless, to include mechanisms for conformance testing will faster assure interoperability among the applications joining the platform. The content of this paper intends to provide a broad view of two of the main ISO TC184/SC4 Standards, i.e. ISO 10303-STEP and ISO 13584-PLib, presenting their methodology and architecture, and contributing for a reference to those managing in the area of the integration of data in industrial domains. This text is based on the standard documentation available, and results from the work developed and in progress in the scope of some industrial and research international projects for the furniture and building and construction industrial sectors within CEN/ISSS and ISO TC184/SC4 (e.g. funStep and ECOS ESPRIT projects).

Keywords: integration of data; standards; information system; modelling; interoperability; data exchange; STEP; PLib.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCAT.2003.002131

International Journal of Computer Applications in Technology, 2003 Vol.18 No.1/2/3/4, pp.105-116

Published online: 21 Jul 2003 *

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