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top MES: Machine data Collection (MDC) for SAP ERP and SAP S/4HANA

From the classic MDC solution to vertical integration

What does a classic machine data Collection do?

Machine data Collection (MDC) links machines in production with data or information processing. Due to an efficient machine data Collection, essential data is recorded correctly and with little effort and is, therefore, quickly – in the best case in real time – available for analysis.

Why do I need a machine data Collection in conjunction with SAP?

By linking machine data with the objects in the ERP system, you go a decisive step further: Analyses and key figures can be created in the context of the plan data, such as those from the production orders. Planned products, planned quantities, planned running times, planned dates, etc. multiply the possibilities of analysis when it is linked to the actual data of the machine data Collection.

This makes the situation on the shop floor completely transparent. Particularly fast, effective and secure when the sometimes immensely high data volume is recorded and processed by automatic machine data Collection. A manual procedure for collecting machine data, on the other hand, unnecessarily strains the resources and often generates many errors in addition.

In this form, machine data Collection thus ensures more transparency in production and makes optimisation potentials more visible. It complements and automates the Collection of operating data. Relevant data is directly reflected in the SAP ERP system. In the best case, the MDC software becomes an important component for the Smart Factory, because the Business Intelligence will be integrated directly in the MES system.

What is the difference between vertical integration and machine data Collection?

Vertical integration goes decisively further than the classic MDC in two places:

  1. Data and objects are not limited. They can contain everything that makes up the production process, or what it needs, for example, not only to be analysed, but also to be automated.
  2. Communication is possible in an unrestricted bidirectional way. While classic machine data collection only knows one direction of communication – from the machine to a target level – data can be exchanged in any direction during vertical integration and can also be communicated in a network-like manner at any time. In this way, for example, process data can be transferred to the machine as specifications, checked or changed during production, and documented at the end for the order.

What distinguishes the machine data collection and the vertical integration of the top MES?

  • Event-based recording and calculation of machine data such as running times, downtimes, faults or quantities produced (classic MDC)
  • Updating of SAP objects by automated document generation (integration of the SAP ERP system)
  • Extension to any SAP objects, such as tools, material movements, quality results, etc.
  • Bidirectional communication between top MES and the automation level
  • Constant transparency about machines and production processes
  • Automatic determination of performance-relevant key figures such as the Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE)
  • Automatable and individually configurable reports and dashboards

Machine data acquisition from top flow fits perfectly with SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA

It is important to use software that fits your system landscape to ensure you don’t get bogged down by conventional machine data acquisition while digitalizing your production processes, but can instead realize a real vertical integration bit by bit. This can be achieved with the top flow solution: Machine data acquisition is seamlessly integrated into SAP ERP or SAP S/4HANA as part of the Manufacturing Execution System (MES) top MES.

The result: The machine data supplements the processes mapped in your existing SAP system and ensures uniform data truth. Established SAP objects are supplied with detailed data and functions are automatically executed in the SAP system.

Advantages of machine data collection with top MES

  • Direct integration with SAP ERP systems
  • Automation of SAP functions and processes
  • Key figures and data on the SAP database (Single Source of Truth)
  • Maximum transparency in production
  • Possibility of continuous optimisation of the manufacturing process
  • Systematic recording of the relevant production parameters
  • High user-friendliness and up-to-date user experience

What is important for machine data collection?

In most cases, machines and systems on a shop floor come from different manufacturers and from different years of construction; the technologies and the available data or their formats are correspondingly differentiated. Machine data collection often has to be supplied from alternative sources. In some machines, retrofitted components can generate the necessary data, while in others, it can be communicated directly with the machine control. When collecting machine data as part of a manufacturing execution system, the data of all assets flow together, are logically processed, made available for analysis or initiate subsequent processes.

Machine Data Collection: Connection to all machines and systems

A cleverly set up machine data collection not only networks the entire production, but will become an essential building block for a smart factory in the future. When connecting machines and systems, top MES consistently relies on the recognised industry standards for communication – above all on OPC Unified Architecture (OPC UA). This allows you to integrate your assets into a continuous digital process with our Manufacturing Execution System. With top MES, you have a solution for machine data collection that enables actual vertical integration.

Further topics:

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Production Data Collection (PDC)

Production Data Collection from top MES fits as a PDC system to existing SAP solutions
top MES

Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE)

OEE calculation can be integrated into an existing SAP environment

Dashboarding and Reporting

Individual dashboarding and reporting in the manufacturing execution system