Table 12 lists possible use cases of interest for OPC UA Clients. Typically, the use case consists of utilization of OPC UA standard mechanisms and data processing at the Client site.

Table 12 – Use Cases and related Companion Specification contributions

Use Case


Companion Specification Contribution

Data acquisition for forwarding to “Data Lake” to enable “Data Mining”

Client applications gather the IO data available for storage in an IT-based database without predetermined purpose. Analysts further on use the data extensively with continuously refined methods and algorithms to identify the potential for economic improvements.

Providing Process Values as components of RIO Channel Objects and/or Process Value arrays or bit fields as components of RIO Channel Group Objects.

Contribute data for Industrial Internet of Things

Client applications present Devices, their properties, and their “live” data in an Industrial Internet of Things ecosystem.

Support standardized information model and data for digital twin

Companies offering automation solutions in special domains want to offer their own digital twin products to their customers.

Support of MES functionality

Companies facing special process requirements or legal stipulations implement their own custom solutions without using MES and/or SCADA products.

Support predictive maintenance

Gather sensor data accompanying the normal operation to enable analysis algorithms to detect data change patterns indicating coming failures before the failure occurs.

Enhance IO channels with semantic information

Plant operators store semantic information providing meaningful additional data for their domain for each IO channel.

Providing the ApplicationTag Variable and the SetApplicationTag Method as components of RIO Channel Group Objects and of RIO Channel Objects.

Obtain and use metadata for channel IO data

IO data metadata like engineering units allow Clients substantially improved understanding and ease of use for the data obtained.

Providing engineering unit and range information as Properties of Process Value Variables.

Support Commissioning

Plant operators switch selected channels into manual mode and enforce a certain process value. Plant operators may also activate a simulation mode and set a simulation value for individual channels.

Providing SetMode, SetSimulation, SetManualProcessValue and SetSimulationValue Methods as components of RIOforPA Channel Objects.

Support diagnosis of error conditions

Client applications process a sequence of diagnosis related events and/or alarms found on the Devices to present a history of incidents to plant operators.

Providing RioChannelDiagnosisEventType and/or RioChannelDiagnosisAlarmType Events.

Server: Supporting durable Subscriptions and/or Alarms and Conditions.

Perform differential diagnosis

Compare PN channel diagnosis and RIO channel diagnosis to obtain a more comprehensive understanding of the error condition.

Obtain PROFINET Cyclic Telegram Semantics

Explore the Telegram Information Model to obtain knowledge about the structure of the cyclic data and the related IO Image in the controlling PLC.

Providing PnTelegramType, PnIoTelegramType and PnIoSignalType Objects in the PROFINET aspect of the Information Model.

Providing cross-aspect References.