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FDT Technology Well On The Road To Standardization

IEC has released the FDT Specification as “Publicly Available Specification” IEC PAS 62453 after an unanimous positive IEC vote in fall last year. Thus, the FDT Group achieved a big step forward on its way to an international standard.

All active IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) member countries have voted unanimously for the standardization of the FDT Technology in October last year. The first meeting of the newly founded working group SC65C WG14 “FDT Interface Specification” took place at the premises of “Deutsche Elektrotechnische Kommission” (DKE; German Electrotechnical Commission) in Frankfurt end of January 2006. This working group is headed by Prof. Christian Diedrich, University Magdeburg and consists of representatives from five different nations. IEC has released the FDT Specification as “Publicly Available Specification” (PAS) in May this year, after some formal adaptations to the specification. This PAS consists of several parts, with part one describing in detail the FDT concept with the basic interfaces. Parts two to five specify the interfaces for communication with INTERBUS, PROFIBUS, HART, and Foundation Fieldbus. Further parts for other bus systems are currently under preparation. The schedule of the working group plans to release an “International Standard” (IS) until fall 2008.

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Also the ISA (Instruments, Systems and Automation Society) has founded a working group in the United States in January this year as review committee for international standardization. It is the task of this new ISA SP103 “FDT Technology” to represent the interests of the American industry in the FDT Specification on its way to an international standard.

“We are proud of the unanimous vote by IEC countries, which gives us confirmation for our way to an open standard for device integration” explains Klaus-Peter Lindner, Vice President for Standards & Associations of the FDT Group and member of the Executive Committee. He continues about the further proceeding of the standardization: “End users not only demand openness for the device description in automation but also for the integration of information in control systems and asset management solutions. The overwhelming support and acceptance of the vast majority of suppliers of control systems and automation devices all around the world shows that the FDT specification meets exactly the requirements of their customers. Thus, we expect a smooth proceeding and are certain to reach our aim, the release of FDT as an International Standard, by 2008.”

About the FDT Group AISBL

The FDT Group AISBL is a not-for-profit corporation consisting of over 50 leading process and factory automation companies worldwide whose major purpose is to provide an open and non proprietary interface for the integration of field devices with engineering, automation and asset management systems. In this environment, end users, manufacturers, universities and research organizations are working together to develop the technology, provide development tools, support and training, coordinate field trials and demonstrations, and enable product interoperability.

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