Lutz Steinleger

February 22, 2024

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Machine Data Acquisition (MDA): Interface between production machines and information processing

Digital Factory

Machine Data Acquisition (MDA) is a crucial component of modern production processes. It forms the link between production machines and information processing. In this blog post, we will look at the basic concept of MDA, including its importance, functionality and benefits. We will also take a look at how MORYX can be used by you as an efficient MDA system (and much more).

Machine Data Acquisition (MDA)

What is Machine Data Acquisition (MDA)?

The MDA describes the interface between the machines on the production floor and the information processing system. It enables the collection, storage and provision of data related to production and manufacturing. This data is invaluable for increasing efficiency, quality control and process optimization.

There are two main types of machine data:

  • Process data: This includes all the information required to directly control the machine. This consists of control data, operating parameters and status information such as power consumption and utilization.
  • Produktdaten: This data is measured at the processing units and provides valuable information about the production process. This includes, for example, quantities, weight, thickness and temperature.

The MDA deals with the generation and transfer of this machine or production-related ACTUAL data. In contrast, order data indicates a TARGET status that is exclusively tailored to the end product.

Some important machine data are:

  • Production quantity
  • Capacity utilization
  • Runtime
  • Availability and reliability
  • Machine condition
  • Energy consumption

Difference between MDA, PDA and MES

  1. MDA (Machine Data Acquisition): Captures and analyzes machine operating data. It supports fault monitoring and problem diagnosis in factories and production facilities.
  2. PDA (Process Data Acquisition): Records general operating data, such as working times, downtimes and quantities.
  3. MES (Manufacturing Execution System): Controls and monitors production, optimizes resources and supports planning.

Advantages of Machine Data Acquisition systems

    • Analysis of Manufacturing Processes: By evaluating the recorded data, weak points can be identified and processes optimized.
    • Optimization of Machine Running Times: The MDA helps to increase machine efficiency and minimize downtimes.
    • Evaluation of Machine Downtimes: By monitoring machine malfunctions, measures can be taken in good time.
    • Notification of machine malfunctions by SMS or email: Early notification of problems.
    • Provision of data for the continuous improvement process (CIP): The MDA provides important information for the continuous development of production.

    Implementation of Machine Data Acquisition

    Ideally, the data is transferred online directly from the machine control system or stored digitally in a data logger. Modern processing systems use industrial interfaces and software tools to transfer the data to ERP, APS or MES systems. These systems enable quality-oriented planning and control of production.

    Implementation of Machine Data Acquisition with MORYX

    The most important elements of MORYX are the Open Source Framework, as well as the Drivers, Modules and Adapters.

    An Open Source Framework is the open software foundation for IIoT applications based on digital twins. The MORYX Drivers are there to translate the digital language diversity of the machines (OT) into the standardized MORYX language. Behind the MORYX Modules lies the logic for analyzing, controlling and optimizing the digital factory. The MORYX Adapters are used to translate the digital language diversity of IT systems into a standardized MORYX language.

    MORYX is a field-proven and open industry platform

    To collect the machine data, MORYX records the data from the OT level via the drivers (standard protocols such as MQTT or OPC UA; proprietary protocols can be retrofitted if required). The collected data can then be semantically enriched in MORYX and thus put into a specific context.

    For example: linking data from the order (Which customer ordered this part?) with that of the digital product twin (What material are the screws in the product made of?) with that of the process that has just been completed (What torque was used to tighten the screw?).

    MORYX then forwards the collected and enriched data as required, e.g. to databases such as InfluxDB or to IT systems such as MES, ERP, etc. The protocols and systems to be connected can be individually configured for each use case thanks to MORYX’s modular approach.

    Tasks of the Machine Data Acquisition

      • Recording of production quantities
      • Machine monitoring in real time
      • Analysis of production processes
      • Analysis of reasons for malfunctions during downtimes
      MORYX is the easiest route to the Digital Factory

      The graphic explains:

      Level 1:
      In the first stage, we use the MORYX Drivers to digitally connect the production cells (OT). For this purpose, digital twins are modeled in order to give the machine data, which is now continuously received, a human-understandable meaning as soon as it is generated – “to be able to interpret it”. MORYX Modules are then integrated in order to derive and visualize analyses and trends based on the machine data (e.g. dashboards).

      Level 2:
      In this step, we use the MORYX Adapters to connect additional IT systems digitally. For this purpose, the digital twins are extended to relate the continuously received IT data to the machine data. (e.g. which item is currently being produced). Based on this, the analyses and trends in the MORYX Modules become even more meaningful. MORYX provides digital consistency from IT to the machine (OT) and vice versa. MORYX uses digital consistency in particular to control production flexibly and to deal with a wide range of product variance and fluctuating quantities.

      Level 3:
      At this stage, further MORYX Modules are integrated in order to actively control production (people and machines) based on IT and OT data.

      We see ourselves as a long-term technology partner for the digitalization of the factory. Thanks to its modular architecture, MORYX grows with the customer’s requirements and builds on what has already been achieved. As with machine data acquisition, MORYX allows you to collect and analyze high-quality data. In addition, it is possible to integrate IT and thus process and optimize the data. With MORYX, you can actively control your production. MORYX is therefore an absolute all-rounder and offers you many options that you can always put together and use to suit your individual requirements.


      Machine Data Acquisition is an indispensable tool for modern production. It helps to increase efficiency, ensure quality and strengthen competitiveness.

      Do you still have questions about machine data acquisition? Let us know!


      FAQ: MDA at MORYX


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