The IREDES standard has several entry points for extensions.
Any time, new application profiles and equipment profiles can be added without affecting th already existing components. Each type of equipment does only need to support the objects applicable to itself. Thereby the implementation effort can be kept at a reasonable level.
Another way of extending an existing an existing profile is to use the hookup points for additional information existing in any Equipment Profile. Thereby additional and even proprietary information can be transmitted. However, standard compliant machinery may only use these entries to provide additional information not required for basic machine operation according to the IREDES standard.
Additional information on the IREDES architecture is available via the Public Downloads.
IREDES uses XML to define a standard that makes full advantage of this object oriented technology. This results in a high degree of re-usability of components defined once.
In both file based and networking transfer, IREDES uses identical procedures. Therefor, the application programs do not need to know how the information is transferred. Consequently, no additional application programming effort is required to exchange e.g. drill patterns via network or phone modem instead of using a memory card or floppy disk.
The IREDES standard sets high focus on flexibility. Consequently, IREDES via the XML structured language supports object oriented software design and data encapsulation. The standard’s architecture covers three different levels:
- The Administration level covering all data objects needed for the administration of the data exchange itself.
- The Application Profile level covering all general information for one application purpose (e.g. “Planning Data” or “Production Quality Log”), which may be commonly used for all types of equipment.
- The Equipment Profile level adding detailed, equipment specific information to each Application Profile applicable for the specific equipment type. The first Equipment Profiles available covers the Drill Rig.
An IREDES Application Profile defines all standardized information required for a certain application purpose as e.g. Production Performance information, Production Quality data or a Production Plan.
All information defined in an Application Profile is identical for all equipment types this Application Profile is used with.
An IREDES equipment Profile defines all standardized information used with a particular type of equipment exclusively. Such equipment profiles exist e.g. for drill rigs or LHD’s. Each Equipment Profile consists of entries to those Application Profiles applicable to the particular equipment type. In XML representation, the Equipment Profile entries are derived from the applicable Application Profile: The Drill Rigs Production Performance data set is derived from the General Production Performance XML object, exactly as the LHD Production Performance data set.
Additional objects might be used throughout different profiles and data sets. These objects are called “Commonly Used Objects”. Examples for such objects are the Coordinate System handling or reporting objects for widely used components like e.g. a Diesel motor.
As a basic technology, IREDES uses the Extensible Markup Language (XML, which originally is a method to formalize the content of web pages automatically generated e.g. by databases. XML is used by commercial standard software and database systems for application level information interchange.
XML now also is becoming increasingly popular in automation and technical applications for defining data exchange interfaces.
IREDES builds on this modern and widely used technology to formally describe the hierarchy and the description of the exchanged parameters by XML schemas. The information itself is then transferred using XML data sets.