The Open Platform Communication Unified Architecture (OPC-UA) protocol is a widely used industrial standard for providing software interfaces to hardware devices. The quasar framework is a collaborative, open source effort, for rapid, model-driven development of OPC-UA servers. The project originated from a common requirement amongst CERN development teams to build OPC-UA servers for custom and commercial LHC experiment hardware devices. The framework is also used for other CERN activities as well as externally.
In 2016, CERN entered collaboration agreements with industrial power supply vendors, CAEN and ISEG, to ensure delivery of integration components for CERN's multi-million CHF installations of their commercial off-the-shelf power supply devices. This is a mutually benefical agreement: both CERN and the vendors benefit from having high quality standards based integration components to their respective hardware.
In 2017, a collaboration agreement with the third industrial power supply vendor, Wiener Power Electronics, was signed - moving the existing installed base of Wiener hardware towards a more integrated modern controls framework, while the company provides support for the latest industry standards, such as OPC-UA.
The quasar project is distributed under an Open Source licence which facilitates its adoption by a wide community, in both academia and industry.