The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), being the basis for the Industry 4.0 and Smart Factory, provides connectivity for smart factories, machines, industrial infrastructure, management systems, and more, to streamline business operations, creating intelligent, self-optimizing industrial equipment and facilities. A number of challenges – related to the management of equipment and resources, the security and safety of people – can be addressed with innovative IoT solutions.
The Industrial IoT represents a fast-growing field of application of low-power wide-area (LPWA) networks like LoRaWAN™, due to its exceptionally low power capabilities perfectly suited for the industrial automation world, enabling innovative services for improving efficiency, reliability, and availability of industrial processes and products. Actility, being at the heart of an ecosystem of IoT sensors and applications makers, offers an IoT connectivity platform, ThingPark, providing its LoRaWAN™ network server and software to manage both private and public networks, under a unified, scalable, multipurpose IoT network infrastructure.
IoT tackling the challenges of the Industry 4.0
Industrial facilities and sites in key sectors like manufacturing, railway, construction, oil & gas, and many others currently face a number of challenges:
Increased competition and demand for production volumes are building stress on machines and causing higher risks of failures or down times.
Raw materials are growing scarce and becoming more expensive, obliging companies to optimize their operations, to reduce energy inefficiency and manufacturing waste.
Industrial safety has to comply with tougher regulations, requiring secure real-time monitoring of workers, equipment, and environment.
It’s more practical and compelling than ever to connect manufacturing equipment to a Web-based network, deriving substantial value from it. The Internet of Things, harnessing the benefits of low-power wide-area (LPWA) networks like LoRaWAN™, allows adding digital sensors and networking technologies to the devices and systems of the analog world.
Actility is focusing on the Industrial IoT, which deals with connectivity for smart factories, machines, industrial infrastructure, management systems, and more, to streamline business operations. The Industrial IoT is the basis for the Industry 4.0, which refers globally to the use of automation and data exchange in manufacturing, also using robotics, system integration, cybersecurity, the Cloud, data analytics, and augmented reality. These technologies are used to create a “smart factory” where machines, systems, and humans communicate with each other in order to coordinate and monitor progress along the assembly line.
Sharpen your competitive edge with LoRaWAN
IoT applications for the Industry 4.0, using those Intelligent sensors and low-power connectivity, are driving operational efficiency through automation, connectivity and analytics in manufacturing and operations, asset management, planning and inventory, quality sensing and prediction, condition-based monitoring in industrial plants and manufacturing facilities.
The payoff for manufacturers who implement Industrial IoT solutions lies in better decision-making. When devices are connected, the data they generate can flow into software applications that create the information individuals can use to make choices that are timely and effective. By understanding the results of these choices more fully, decision-makers can achieve strategic objectives or benchmark performance. Better decisions mean fewer mistakes and less waste.
Connecting machines and utilizing directly applicable real-time information allows to optimize performance, perfect maintenance cycles and improve productivity. Perhaps the most positive and encouraging aspect of the Industrial IoT and Industry 4.0 is the explicit acknowledgment that the individual human being will continue to play an active, engaging role in manufacturing. Therefore, people’s safety is one of the main achievements of IoT implementation in industrial environment.
One multi-purpose network, many applications
LoRaWAN™ is becoming widely used and helps to achieve the target of implementing predictive maintenance, industrial assets and environment control, energy consumption monitoring, and other solutions in a very efficient way. To sustain such kind of solutions, local on premises private networks in particular are becoming very used into the industrial applications, mainly for the benefits related to security, low latency, and data transfer optimization. To make it possible, Actility provides its LoRaWAN™ network server and software to manage public or private networks, under a unified, scalable, multipurpose IoT network infrastructure. A single platform facilitates the deployment, operation, and maintenance of your industrial projects, and LoRaWAN™ ensures that you know the vital data of your systems.
LoRaWAN™ offers long range (up to 15km) bi-directional communications with very low power consumption, deep indoor penetration and very low Total Cost of Ownership. LoRa-enabled sensors detect and measure physical characteristics or conditions of a device (on/off states, amperage draw, temperature, pressure, vibration levels) and perform other functions, like using geolocation technologies or converting analog readings into a digital format. Moreover, you save the installation of cables with battery-powered LoRa sensors.
LoRaWAN™ offers long range (up to 15km) bi-directional communications with very low power consumption, deep indoor penetration and very low Total Cost of Ownership.
LoRa-enabled sensors detect and measure physical characteristics or conditions of a device (on/off states, amperage draw, temperature, pressure, vibration levels) and perform other functions, like using geolocation technologies or converting analog readings into a digital format. Moreover, you save the installation of cables with battery-powered LoRa sensors.
The LPWA network is a cost-effective solution which allows smart industries to have complete control of the network and data with only a few base stations, and managing sensors and devices with a very low Total Cost of Ownership. Once the network is deployed, it’s easy and cost-effective to expand the value of the network investment over time by adding new devices. It also provides standardized, robust security; state-of-the art network management tools; and high quality of service. Through an ecosystem of partners utilizing Actility’s interoperable platform, industries can now leverage significant advancements in IoT technology, including multi-application networks; cloud computing; data analytics; and a new generation of battery-powered edge devices and sensors. All these technologies come together in our IoT connectivity platform that delivers new and differentiating value to enable smart utilities.