IoT – internet of things
Ever tried using your phone to start the TV or just the turn off the lights? Well, that’s the Internet of Things – household items or everyday things connected to the internet.
Nowadays, the ever-present internet and innovations have connected tons of things together. Light switches, automobiles, and household appliances focus on providing consumers with efficient, safe, and greater experiences. The interaction with these intelligent devices lays the groundwork for smaller bills of electricity and a more simplified daily life.
Industrial Internet of Things
IIoT refers to the IoT branch, entirely dedicated to the manufacturing and agriculture sectors. It is also about connecting devices and making them more accessible and smarter, but on a much broader scale. Here, the final objective is to generate speed and safety to make production facilities operate more efficiently and at lower costs.
In this article, we will outline the fundamental distinctions that product managers and customers must acknowledge when planning IIoT solutions.
The main parameters that differentiate IoT from industrial IoT
Security is important for all IoT solutions, but more stringent steps are needed for industrial IoT solutions.
A failure of a high volume manufacturing cycle can lead to loss of production, resulting in the loss of millions of dollars a day. A shutdown of the power grid can impact millions of people’s economic activities, and undermine national security.
IIoT solutions use a range of additional security measures, ranging from robust and reliable system architectures, advanced chipsets, encryption and authentication, hazard detection, to process management.
Industrial networks are specialized in large-scale networks that support many applications designed for controllers, machines, robots, and other purposes.
IIoT solutions implemented in these networks must scale flawlessly in order to support hundreds of thousands of new sensors, devices, and controllers, as well as existing non-IoT devices.
The support includes interoperability, planning, implementation of the process, data collection, analysis, strategic planning, and integration with systems for production and business execution.
It is not unusual for the manufacturing systems to run in long-term cycles, such as 20 to 30 years before being replaced.
They work in severe environments, often subject to intense conditions such as heat, cold, high vibration, pressure, and danger. They may operate far away from headquarters, in remote locations.
The same conditions and requirements may apply to Industrial Internet of Things solutions. They have to be engineered to maintain high availability, to endure long service cycles, and to run consistently and beyond tolerance, day after day for years and years, with shutdowns for maintenance only.
Important manufacturing systems and processes, where downtime is not an option, are created with resilience in mind. A breakdown will not stop the processes in one part of the system.
Industrial Internet of Things systems must promote error detection or durability capabilities in their architecture in mission-critical operations. From loss of sensors to loss of interconnection, industrial IoT systems and architectures must compensate for in-use errors and still be capable of completing their processes properly.
Precision and accuracy
Industrial operations demand higher levels of accuracy and precision.
Automated manufacturing processes of high volume and speed are coordinated to milliseconds.
Quality assurance systems are capable of detecting directional variations and take prompt corrective action based on those measures. Close enough is not good enough in this environment and leads to lost efficiency or downtime. Industrial IoT solutions must conduct activities where business as usual means high precision and accuracy.
Most manufacturing processes are highly automated from start to finish, with minimal human involvement.
IoT applications operating in industrial environments need to meet a variety of standards regarding autonomy. This may include incorporating intelligence into the edge devices, integrating control and automation logic into the gateway, or embedding deep learning capabilities into the system architecture. They must also be programmable and compatible with the existing or modern manufacturing execution systems.
For years and years, industrial systems have had to function accurately and predictably under tough conditions.
Supporting the overall performance requires more maintenance from the in-house and service technicians in the field. To handle the necessary performance levels, IoT solutions functioning in industrial environments must be serviceable.
From swapping sensors, firmware updating, to customizing gateways and servers, the ability to maintain industrial IoT solutions throughout the entire lifecycle is a key requirement.
The future of IoT and IIoT
Basically, IoT and IIoT operate in the same way. Both are connecting devices to the internet, making them smarter. The dissimilarity is that IoT works to make it easier and more convenient for consumers to live, where IIoT works to enhance the security and efficiency of the production facilities.
IIoT and IoT users tend to aim to achieve slightly different objectives. IoT implementation is usually designed to increase efficiency, improve safety and health, and create improved experiences. Typically, IIoT is mainly concerned with the first two objectives and is less user-centric. It is not used by average consumers in their private lives and is part of an industrial process instead.
Over the coming years, the adoption of IoT and IIoT technologies will continue to grow.
These technologies already affect a broad range of sectors, from consumer goods to manufacturing to healthcare.
Along with some other emerging technologies, they will keep driving digital transformation and dramatically change nearly every sector. IoT and IIoT have the ability to be even more important when used in conjunction with automation, data analytics, artificial intelligence, and other modern technologies.
IoT and IIoT are playing an increasing role in our professional and personal lives, as the future continues to become connected, smart, and digitized.