Panasonic supports new global M2M standard [ELS]

June 12, 2018 Newsletter

During SMT Hybrid Packaging 2018 exhibition in Nuremberg – Germany, Panasonic Factory Solutions Europe, a division of Panasonic Industry Europe GmbH, provided a JARA (Japan Robot Association) collective press release and published below announcement about the next generation of equipment communication called

ELS (EQUIPMENT LINK STANDARD)

Iván Rodrigo Flor Cantos, Planning & Marketing Manager of Panasonic Factory Solutions Europe: ”A common machine language is essential for seamless functionality when combining different equipment from different suppliers. Introducing a new and better machine standard protocol opens to customers new possibilities and an added value by giving them the option and guaranty of being flexible.”.

JARAS1014 (ELS Communication Protocol) Standard
(Japan Robot Association’s Standard No.1014)

For the next Smart Factories generation, JARA has developed a comprehensive state-of-the-art PCB transfer communication protocol which grants the following benefits between all connected equipment in the SMT production line:
1. M2M*1 PCB transfer (including simple equipment controlled by PLC)
2. Seamless collective changeover of all equipment
3. M2M inspection results data exchange

<Participating Companies as end of May 2018>

CKD Corporation Musashi Engineering Inc. Saki Corporation
FUJI CORPORATION Mycronic Corporation Senju Metal Industry Co., Ltd.
JUKI CORPORATION Nagaoka Factory Corporation TAMURA CORPORATION
KOH YOUNG TECHNOLOGY INC. NAGOYA ELECTRIC WORKS Co., Ltd. Test Research, Inc.
Komatsu Electronics Co., Ltd. OMRON Corporation Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.
Marantz Electronics Ltd. Panasonic Corporation YS Co., Ltd.
MIRTEC JAPAN Co., Ltd. Parmi Co., Ltd. Note: In alphabetical order

JARA (Japan Robot Association) and SEMI (Headquarter in Milpitas/CA) announced collaboration for standardizing M2M (Machine to Machine) communication in SMT (Surface Mount Technology) lines based on the SEMI A1 HC*2  (Horizontal Communication). Current SMT production lines are composed of various equipment (e.g. printers, inspection machines, placement machines, reflow ovens and connecting conveyors) which are often provided by different equipment suppliers. PCB data, production information and communication protocol of connected equipment are unique for each equipment supplier. This situation leads to loss of productivity, resources and time.

Therefore, at the Japan Robot Association, 20 leading SMT equipment and related software manufactures have jointly launched a subcommittee for SMT equipment M2M communication protocol standardization.

Meanwhile, SEMI has developed an M2M cooperation standard named “SEMI A1 HC” protocol based on their experience in automating complete control of semiconductor machines and adapting these to the requirements of “Industry 4.0”. This standard covers both products and associated information flow for the shop-floor type production line. SEMI A1 HC has not only a transfer function to hand over a set of product itself and its information between connected machines, but also a general purpose communication function to exchange machine setting information and processing feedback information between connected machines through the entire production line. Moreover, “SEMI A1 HC” can also be applied to communicate between a host computer and machine.

JARA has decided to adapt “SEMI A1 HC” for M2M cooperation in SMT lines and finally complete it to establish a new JARA standard.
By standardizing the communication protocol between machines from different suppliers, user-friendly placement systems can be established to simplify and facilitate production instead of sticking to each different supplier. This standardization includes facilitating production management and faster response time to variable-volume variable-mix production demands. Manufacturing companies will have opportunities to provide new added values.

JARA and SEMI will be cooperating by developing innovation for the future SMT market.

Reference
M2M*1: “Machine To Machine” (M2M) is a common term to describe technology that enables any network connected device to exchange information and perform actions without manual assistance of humans
SEMI A1 HC*2: SEMI A1 Specification for Horizontal Communication (HC) between Equipment for Factory Automation Systems

 

 

 

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