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To:                  Subscribers PLCopen Newsletter

Subject:           PLCopen® Newsletter December 2015



Welcome to the PLCopen® electronic newsletter.

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PLCopen Newsletter - Issue December 2015


The year 2015 is coming to an end. For many of you it probably was again a year with many changes and new challenges and hopefully with good results too.


Thank you all for your support and the interest in the work of PLCopen. We wish you Happy Holidays and a very successful new year, in your professional and especially in your personal life.



1. PLCopen Software Construction Guidelines

2. New PLCopen Motion Control certifications

3. New PLCopen Conformity Level ST certification

4. PLCopen sponsors ARC’s 20th Annual Industry Forum



1. PLCopen Software Construction Guidelines


Although there are guidelines for many programming languages, these are nearly non-existent for the important area of industrial control, e.g. IEC 61131-3 and its PLCopen extensions. Nevertheless, the software in the industrial environment is becoming more and more important, the software projects are larger, and the costs of errors increase. Software nowadays absorbs half of the initial project costs and between 40 and 80% deals with maintenance over the life cycle costs of the software. In order to deal with the complexity of larger programs one needs modern software development processes supporting a structured approach and creating re-usable code. Also, we need to increase the efficiency in coding via re-use of pre-defined functionalities and to help to better understand the program over the life cycle.


PLCopen supports this goal via their initiative Software Construction Guidelines. Within this activity several sub-groups are identified, and the first activities are near results.

The first result was via publishing the “Release for Comments” of the Coding Guidelines in July 2015, containing 63 rules for software programming, spread over different sections like: Naming Rules, Comment Rules, Coding Practice, Languages, and even Vendor Specific IEC 61131-3 Extensions.

These rules are very useful to train users and can be a good basis for universities to help them teach IEC 61131-3 programming more efficiently, as well as to define company-internal guidelines.

This first document was very well accepted in the market, resulting in many feedback items. The feedback will result in a first official version that is planned to be published beginning of next year.


Since the release of the first documents, further work was done on the following topics:

•           Creating PLCopen compliant Function Block Libraries

•           Structuring and decomposition via SFC (do’s & don’ts)


Both areas are close to publishing their first results. The libraries are giving guidance and examples to create own libraries. For this templates are provided for the two basic Function Blocks operation differences: edge-triggered or level-triggered. This basis is extended with time-out functionality and a timer to spread an operation over multiple operating cycles. The included examples shows also the basic code, also in the object oriented approach as provided by the 3rd edition of the IEC 61131-3 standard.


Additional working groups active under the Software Construction Guidelines will focus on the following topics:

•           Guidance for documentation in software programs

•           Software quality issues and software consistency

•           Software development process

•           Object orientation in the 3rd edition


The results of the different subgroups will be made available on the PLCopen website on an on-going basis.


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2. New PLCopen Motion Control certifications


Four of our members have been awarded the PLCopen Motion Control certification for their products:


Danfoss, based in Germany, for its products Danfoss motion library for VLT® Integrated Servo Drive ISD® 510 System for Automation Studio™, and Danfoss motion library for VLT® Integrated Servo Drive ISD 510® System for TwinCAT® 2 (PLCopen Motion Control Part 1);


KUKA Roboter, based in Germany, for KUKA.PLC mxAutomation (PLCopen Motion Control Part 4);


Mitsubishi Electric Europe, based in Germany, for FX5U, MR-JE-A via Modbus, GX Works3 (PLCopen Motion Control Part 1); and


VIPA, based in Germany, for SPEED7 Studio Professional (PLCopen Motion Control Part 1).


This brings the number of members with a PLCopen Motion Control certification on 31, and the total of certified products on 58.


For more information check our website.


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3. New PLCopen Conformity Level ST certification


From the start of PLCopen one of the activities was the certification of the IEC 61131-3 editors. Subject of testing and certification are software tools, which are implemented according to the standard IEC 61131-3 and additional requirements of PLCopen.


PLCopen is pleased to announce that one of our members recently successfully passed the tests performed by the test laboratory of iƒak in Germany, for the Certification of a system according to PLCopen Conformity Level for ST (Structured Text).


This member is:


OMRON Corporation for their product Sysmac Studio, and


For more information visit


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4. PLCopen sponsors ARC’s 20th Annual Industry Forum


The ARC Industry Forum is the “must attend” learning event of the year for industry executives and technology solution providers.


PLCopen is sponsoring ARC’s 20th Annual Industry Forum – ‘Industry in Transition:  Navigating the New Age of Innovation’, which takes place from February 8-11, 2016 in Orlando, Florida, USA.


Industrial companies are beginning to move beyond the computer-enhanced business models of the late twentieth century. Many are embracing new models that take advantage of intelligent connected products coupled with potent software and analytics. Expect to see innovations in smarter products, new service and operating models, new production techniques, and new approaches to design and sourcing.

Join us at the 20th annual ARC Industry Forum to learn more about how this industrial transformation will unfold. Discover what other companies are doing today to prepare for the new age of industrial innovation and how they expect to improve their business performance by doing so.


For more information on the Forum program, please visit:


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Kind regards,


Eelco van der Wal

Managing Director PLCopen


P.O. Box 3009

NL 4200 EA Gorinchem, The Netherlands

Tel. +31-183-660261

Fax +31-183-664821





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