Android Phones Gain Easy Access to Live Process Data
ATS developer discovers a quick, easy way to put live
process data into Android phones and other devices using the OPC
Georgetown, Ontario (June 29, 2010) Mr. Freddy Martens, a software developer at ATS
in the Netherlands, has found an easy, Java-based solution for
putting real-time data from industrial processes into a mobile
phone or other Android-based device, using the OPC DataHub
from Cogent Real-Time Systems. He has posted his story on the
blog with instructions for other Android developers to
follow and links to download the software he
"This was surprisingly easy," said Freddy. "It just took a
few hours of coding and editing XML files. Cogent provides a
demo version of the OPC DataHub with a Java API, and the Android
SDK examples are a good starting point to develop the front-end.
A beginner Java programmer could also do this within half a
The resulting application lets a user enter the name of
any process variable in his system into an Android cell phone
and receive a live value that updates in real time. This type of
application could be used for monitoring OEE data directly from
the shop floor, adjusting setpoints on the fly, getting the
latest equipment alarms, or commissioning machinery.
"On the ATS
TechLab blog we have written the necessary steps,
followed by a few examples," said Freddy. "The example code
is easy to read and well documented. That should be enough to
get started on this and similar Android development projects.
The data connectivity side is all done for you, using Cogent's
The OPC DataHub gives quick, reliable, and secure access
to valuable information direct from the factory floor. It is an
integrated tool that can present live process data directly on
an engineer's or manager's desk in a form most suitable:
database, spreadsheet, or web page. It provides OPC tunnelling,
bridging, and aggregation, and has a free API to support
virtually any type of OPC connectivity required.
"The ATS TechLab blog is new and more posts are coming,"
said Mr Rob Valent, Managing Director of ATS Benelux. "The blog
is our developer's view on products we sell or use. I won't be
supprised if our engineers post more OPC DataHub related stories
in the near future."
ATS is an independent solution provider for industrial,
process and information technology users world-wide. They
provide products and services for all three levels of the
automation pyramid: control, execution and information. Since
its foundation in 1986, ATS has been active in consulting,
training, on-site engineering, projects, product development,
and support activities for automation and IT systems.
Founded in 1995, Cogent Real-Time Systems is
the leader in real-time cross-platform data integration between
Windows, Linux and QNX. Customers include the Bank of Canada, Cadbury
Chocolate and the European Space Agency. Cogent leverages its
experience in real-time data communications to provide the next
generation of OPC products.