OSIsoft PI Experts with over 20 years of PI experience serving industrial clients.

What is a Data Historian?

A Data Historian (also known as a Process Historian) is a software program that deals with time series data. It will record manufacturing floor data over a specific amount of time from different parts of the facility for the user to analyze. Whether one chooses to analyze a valve, tank level, fan temperature, or even a CPU the customer can evaluate their efficiency, profitability, and setbacks of production.

  • Analog Readings: temperature, pressure, flowrates, levels, weights
  • Digital Readings: valves, limit switches, motors on/off, discreet level sensors
  • Product Info: product id, batch id, material id, raw material lot id
  • Quality Info: process and product limits, custom limits
  • Alarm Info: out of limits signals, return to normal signals
  • Aggregate data: average, standard deviation, cpk, moving average

In addition to time series data recording, Asset Management is becoming an increasingly important feature that helps users easily navigate through the volume and frequency of data available to them.

Once real-time data recording is available at useful granularities and an asset hierarchy is built to help navigate all of the data, companies are putting logic in place to recognize and catalog a set of event timeframes that have occurred overtime and triggering text messages and email notifications for those times when the user is not watching the process on a computer screen, for example:

  • When was this specific product made
  • When were stack emmissions in violation of industry compliance
Use this diagram to record analog readings, digital readings, product info, quality info and many other types of information of the PI system.