Authored by Dennis Brandl, a member of MESA International
MESA International just announced the release of Version 7 of the widely used B2MML and BatchML specifications. Version 7 brings the ISA-95 and B2MML specifications completely in sync. The extensions that were in B2MML because of user requests have been incorporated into the ISA-95 2018/2019 releases, and B2MML was updated to match new models added to the ISA-95 standards. These include a complete test model for materials, personnel, equipment, and physical assets, linked to operations requests and work requests. This B2MML version also adds spatial location information to all resources, allowing tracking of remote equipment, personal, and stored material. The ISA-95 work calendar model was added to B2MML to allow the exchange of shift definitions, vacation specifications, and other calendar related events. A standardized error message was added to B2MML, simplifying integration projects, and providing better debugging of integration problems.
One major addition in B2MML V7 are Operations Events, a new model in ISA-95 that supports event driven architectures. Event driven architecture are often applied to integration of systems made up of loosely coupled software components and services, a target market for the B2MML specification. B2MML V7 supports the definition of event classes, and then the exchange of event information as operations events occur.
B2MML V7 also includes a Master Data Profile schema, derived from the ISA TR95.01 Master Data Profile Template, allowing for the exchange of configuration information in a single file. A single B2MML Master Data Profile document can be imported by multiple applications, reducing the time, effort, and errors associated with integration projects.
Because of the changes in the ISA-95 specification, B2MML V7 is not fully backward compatible with Version 6, but the changes are minor. These include the new Testing Model and changes to a few attribute names, mostly related to Hierarchy Scope and Locations. B2MML users are encouraged to pick up B2MML V7 from the MESA web site at https://www.pathlms.com/mesa/courses/26161.