Standards and Interoperability in Digitized Industry

This module focus how standards enable interoperability in a digitized information environment.

STARTING DATE: 2021-11-22

The smart industry is a fully connected and flexible system that can use data streamed from connected operations and engineering- and production systems. In a digital environment, information will flow through many different computer systems and services. Interoperability is fundamental, since that is what makes it possible to exchange and share information in a digitally connected environment. What is more important is that there are well-defined information protocols that can represent the types of information that different computer systems and services conform to.

The module on Interoperability and standards in the digitized industry will give an understanding of how standards enable interoperability, in the sense that information should flow seamlessly between the computer systems and services in a connected system. Many different standards exist and are in development for the digitized industry. However, it is difficult to know which standard to use, and how to use it, without prior knowledge and experience. This module will provide an overview of existing standards and the standard bodies and communities that are of relevance to smart industry.

Standards for the exchange and sharing of product data come in many shapes and flavours when it comes to the technology and methods that are used. For example, when developing a standard the information model is the key product of the standard together with so-called implementation methods. In this module, the major information modelling languages used in different standards will be presented to give an understanding of the key concepts. Using a standard for exchange and sharing of product data means that a format is needed, such as for example XML or JSON, via an API, or as a data exchange file. Methods that are used to create those formats from an information model is presented in this module.

A selection of the most relevant standards will be presented to give an understanding of the scope, content and intended use of the information models of those standards.

The different types of computer systems used in smart industry and how they relate to the relevant standards will also be presented. Examples of types of computer systems, or applications, used are CAD, CAM, CAPP, PDM/PLM, ERP, MES, and maintenance management.

The data exchange, or sharing, process implies that information needs to be extracted and then mapped to the target system. This module will give an understanding of how this can be done using structured methods and what type of tools and technology are involved.

Learning objectives

  • Understand the concept of interoperability and how it relates to data exchange and sharing of information
  • Understand the main conceptual and technological landscapes of Industry 4.0.
  • Understand the role of standards for information exchange in the technical landscape of Industry 4.0
  • Understand what type of information is used in different information flows for Industry 4.0
  • Understand the different types of standards used for information exchange and potential overlaps between different standards in the landscape of Industry 4.0
  • Understand the basic principles used when developing standards
  • Understand the future development of standards

Module structure

This module includes a mix of activities: lectures, quizzes, small hands-on assignments, self-study and recommended readings. Expect videos, exercises, reflections that you share with other participants, webinars for cross-participant discussions, and much more.


Five themes covering:

  • Interoperability
  • Standards and Digitized Industry
  • Standards used by Smart Manufacturing
  • 3D/2D Product Model and Data Exchange using neutral formats
  • Applications

Time commitment

The expectation is that anyone enrolled will devote around 25h-27h distributed over the different activities.

The schedule

November 22 — The module starts
TBD — 1st Webinar – “Module kick-off Webinar”
TBD — 2nd Webinar – “Virtual Discussion”
TBD — 3rd Webinar – “Summary and Virtual Discussion”


After applying to the program, please secure dates in your calendar to be able to join planned webinars and assure time available required for learning.

A unique module created in co-operation between academia and industry

This module is developed in collaborations with Eurostep and KTH Royal Institute of Technology

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