Integration between process control, plant-level and enterprise systems is no longer an option for industrial companies if they want to remain competitive, especially considering the current global context. Convergence of the IT world with automation and process controls greatly helps in this effort by providing economically and technically competitive solutions. There are different options available and it is important for companies to thoroughly understand their needs and objectives before making decisions.
This paper examined main concerns in system integration, with particular interest for the integration of real-time data with the enterprise level. Main trends have been described and some case studies demonstrate how a rational utilization of state-of-the-art software technologies can help improve operations and reduce budgets for project implementation and system maintenance.
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