In addition to classic automation projects at field level, the demand for scalable solutions that offer connectivity from the sensor to the cloud and with mobile devices is increasing among industrial manufacturing firms. COPA-DATA is responding to this demand by integrating its zenon software with the Microsoft Azure cloud platform. Thanks to its knowledge and wealth of experience in cloud-based smart factory and smart city solutions, COPA-DATA has now achieved Gold status in the Microsoft Cloud Platform competency.
With the awarding of competencies, Microsoft is supporting its partners in the Microsoft Partner Network to advertise their industry-leading skills and specialist knowledge in a professional manner and to clearly set themselves apart from the competition.
In order to achieve one or more of the 18 competencies in the six categories available at present, it is necessary to meet certain requirements and to evidence these in annual reviews. Depending on the extent to which these requirements have been met, a company may be awarded either a Gold or a Silver competency. Only partners that have shown consistent high performance and exceptional commitment are given Gold competencies.
After achieving Silver status in the Cloud Platform competency in 2016, COPA-DATA has now satisfied all the requirements for the highest level – Gold – in this category.
“The requirements for achieving Gold status in this competency are high,” explained Johannes Petrowisch, Global Partner & Business Development Manager at COPA-DATA. “One of the criteria, for example, was to have achieved Microsoft Azure sales amounting to at least 100,000 US dollars within the last twelve months. This shows that companies have to implement customer projects on a relatively large scale and in a relatively short space of time to obtain the necessary competency. We are therefore particularly pleased that we have been able to evidence this and put ourselves forward as an expert partner for cloud projects.”
As zenon is seamlessly integrated with Microsoft Azure, data can be retrieved and further processed centrally and in real time. This means, for example, that relevant production, performance, or consumption indicators from various locations can be captured, collected, processed further, and compared in order to identify potential for improvement and to take corresponding optimization measures. Thanks to connectivity from the field level up to the cloud, the interaction between the two technologies presents an entirely new range of applications which sees classic automation projects merge with typical IT or business intelligence projects. As a result, production efficiency can be increased, use of resources optimized, and completely new service or business models implemented, to name but a few benefits.
Integration between zenon and Microsoft Azure started back in 2014. Initially, the main reason for integrating selected Microsoft Azure services was to provide a scalable solution for storing the large volumes of data collected in industrial projects centrally in a cost-effective infrastructure.
“In today's industrial applications, which extend up into the cloud, the delivery model is mainly used for calculations across systems or locations, and for predictive analyses,” explains Stefan Reuther, Chief Sales Officer at COPA-DATA. “In order to capture, collect, aggregate, further process, and present data, users require a high-performance piece of software like zenon to obtain valuable insights into production output, energy consumption, and quality indicators.”
In addition to its Gold Cloud Platform competency, COPA-DATA is also listed as a Microsoft Gold competency partner for Application Development.
COPA-DATA is the technological leader for ergonomic and highly-dynamic process solutions. The company, founded in 1987, develops the software zenon for HMI/SCADA, Dynamic Production Reporting and integrated PLC systems at its headquarters in Austria. zenon is sold through its own offices in Europe, North America and Asia, as well as partners and distributors throughout the world. Customers benefit from local contact persons and local support thanks to a decentralized corporate structure. As an independent company, COPA-DATA can act quickly and flexibly, continues to set new standards in functionality and ease of use and leads the market trends. Around 135,000 installed systems worldwide provide companies in the Food & Beverage, Energy & Infrastructure, Automotive and Pharmaceutical sectors with new scope for efficient automation.
zenon is a software system from COPA-DATA for industrial automation and the energy industry. Machines and equipment are controlled, monitored and optimized. zenon’s particular strength is open and reliable communication in heterogeneous production facilities. Open interfaces and over 300 native drivers and communication protocols support the horizontal and vertical integration. This allows for continuous implementation of the Industrial IoT and the Smart Factory. Projects with zenon are highly scalable.
zenon is ergonomic, both for the engineer and for the end user. The engineering environment is flexible and can be used for a wide range of applications. The principle of “setting parameters instead of programming” helps engineers to configure projects quickly and without errors. Complex functions for comprehensive projects are supplied out-of-the-box to create intuitive and robust applications. Users can thereby contribute to increased flexibility and efficiency with zenon.