Foundation FB is an open protocol that permits bidirectional data transmission to the field devices. This means that data packets are sent in both directions. It is therefore a point-to-point communication. The application of this technology offers four different basic services:
- Asset management
- Additional information which helps the diagnosis of a problem or condition
- Preventive maintenance
- Distributed data transfer, abbreviated as DDT.
In addition to predictive maintenance, asset management is an especially important theme for decision processes which decisively influence the installation planning. Asset management is basically system software and as such, it often is known as an installation quality management system or AGVS.
Asset management is assigned to the data information area which serves the management of assets from the IT sector. This software also handles physical assets, namely machines and complex installations. Predictive maintenance has a similar meaning. Here, maintenance ‘looks ahead’ so that the assets are monitored permanently and the user can take proactive measures when faults occur.
As such, these components analyze huge quantities of data that are made available from internal sources and it also can predict external influence factors and the possible risks of failure. This prevents down-time of the system, as well as the existing resources for maintenance and the installations. In general, the components are used with greater efficiency. Overall, the use of predictive management offers
- continuous evaluation of data from different source,
- an extensive collection of historical data for valid statements,
- definitions of the permitted nonconformities, and
- prognoses concerning the relevant faults.
In the meantime, these technologies are now being used by over 20 % of users, and many more plan their introduction. This also makes the use of Foundation FB relevant. This open protocol supports the applications that have just been described without problems and as such, it influences the work process positively.