A new Request for Information (RFI) on Open Process Automation was issued yesterday by ExxonMobil Research and Engineering (EMRE). Here is a statement from EMRE about the RFI:
On July 19, 2018 ExxonMobil Research and Engineering issued a Request for Information for control system integration and maintenance services. The scope of work is for integration of hardware and software components in accordance with the principles of the Open Process Automation Forum of The Open Group and in conformance to the emerging Open Process Automation Standards (O-PAS). Furthermore, the scope of work will initially involve pre-commercial prototypes, and eventually involve O-PAS conformant, fully commercial system instances.
This RFI marks an early step that ExxonMobil and its operating company collaboration partners are taking to cultivate an ecosystem of system integrator companies at a scale required to serve the global market demands of end user companies from multiple industry sectors.
To receive the RFI, send an email to email@example.com with Open Process Automation System Integrator RFI in the Subject line.
Let me put this in a bit of context. The plan for development of OPAF called for several “commercial system instances” to be built beginning this year (see figure below). Lockheed Martin built an original proof-of-concept prototype. At the 2018 ARC Orlando Forum OPAF announced that several end users had agreed to host these commercial systems. For these instances, system integrators will work guided by draft OPAF specifications. Another of the underlying ideas here is to engage multiple sets of system integrators and suppliers in this work to both grow the business ecosystem and broaden the review and testing of OPAF specifications.
As ARC noted earlier, ExxonMobil is committed to driving the OPAF organization and technology forward and has huge numbers of DCS installations that will need replacement. The RFI is further indication that ExxonMobil will continue to invest in OPAF suppliers and system integrators.