Welcome!

@ThingsExpo Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Zakia Bouachraoui

Related Topics: @ThingsExpo, Mobile IoT, @DXWorldExpo

@ThingsExpo: Article

Industrial Internet of Things | @ThingsExpo #IoT #IIoT #DigitalTransformation

Throughout history, industrial revolutions have hinged on the power of automating processes

Small image courtesy of: Intopalo

*This is the first in a series of blogs examining Sensor-2-Server communications, development and implementation.

Throughout history, industrial revolutions have hinged on the power of automating processes. While automation today offers many benefits, imagine if you could automate thousands - or even millions - of processes simultaneously? This is the next potential wave of innovation, and it's the organizations that are "geographically dispersed" or "automation heavy" that will benefit the most.

While long-range communications and connectivity have become increasingly easier to attain, businesses need to be able to break down their isolated islands of automation in industry to achieve comprehensive and connected automation at scale. For example, there always has been a clear line dividing operations technology (OT) and information technology (IT) networks. The emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) blurs that line as industrial operations head in the direction of complete connectivity for all devices on a network - including those remotely located in the field. With new dedicated access layer platforms, IoT data can be analyzed, acted upon and transmitted from anywhere in an Industrial IoT (IIoT) network.

The increasing shift toward Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) tends to bring up a lot of questions about the continued value of Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems that have traditionally served as the driver for monitoring and control in industrial markets. Although OT and IT are beginning to converge, there is still high demand for SCADA data. However, new technology offers the opportunity for data to be used in ways that were previously not possible, such as predictive analytics. This doesn't make SCADA obsolete, as many operators are using it and will continue to employ it. Going forward, industries will leverage new technologies designed to help them make better business decisions than with SCADA alone.

Sensor-2-Server™ (S2S™) intelligent communications for the access layer can collect and transport the data that supports higher-level analytics. As IoT becomes adopted by industrial markets, there is going to be an increased demand for video, voice, data and sensor data communication from the outermost layer of the network (think sensors on oil pads or water tanks). Industries like oil and gas, electric power, agriculture and utilities are starting to pick up on the benefits of S2S when it comes to profitability and cost savings through more advanced data analytics.

Defining Sensor-2-Server
S2S is intelligent communication that begins at the sensor level and targets servers for specific reasons. These servers could include anything from a SCADA data server that collects and monitors through the SCADA system or a Big Data engine. S2S could be leveraged in a predictive analytics engine that compares data at rest stored in a database to data in motion in real time from the access layer of the network. The concept of S2S extends beyond transmitting data. It is about creating intelligent transmission from a specific location back to the appropriate server with the appropriate intelligence to drive action for change.

What Is the Access Layer?
The access layer is the edge of the IT network. An IT infrastructure has a core that is home to all the Big Data and data analytics. At this core, the data is "at rest" because it has reached its final destination. Next is the distribution layer of the IT infrastructure which is where the major plants, sites and facilities are located. Further out is the aggregate layer where data at the next level in the network is collected. Extending out even further is the access layer.

The access layer is the layer at the far edge of the IT network.

In oil and gas, for example, oil pads would be part of the access layer because they are typically remotely located at the edge of the network. It is highly likely that sensors physically exist in this layer for monitoring and control of these devices. Additional examples of the access layer are tanks, refinery sites and ocean exploration vessels. In water/wastewater, the access layer could be the treatment facility that has the water meters, pumps, smart meters, etc. Essentially, in an industrial site, the S2S access layer is the furthest point at which the operators are collecting sensor data. Industrial organizations today need intelligent secure communication and transmission from the sensor data back to the appropriate server, and there are a number of available options.

What's Next?
Next week, we'll continue our Sensor-2-Server series with a look at implementation and some of the core tenets of communication system development.

More Stories By Scott Allen

Scott is an executive leader with more than 25 years of experience in product lifecycle management, product marketing, business development, and technology deployment. He offers a unique blend of start-up aggressiveness and established company executive leadership, with expertise in product delivery, demand generation, and global market expansion. As CMO of FreeWave, Scott is responsible for product life cycle/management, GTM execution, demand generation, and brand creation/expansion strategies.

Prior to joining FreeWave, Scott held executive management positions at Fluke Networks (a Danaher Company), Network Associates (McAfee), and several start-ups including Mazu Networks and NEXVU Business Solutions. Scott earned his BA in Computer Information Systems from Weber University.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Digital Transformation is much more than a buzzword. The radical shift to digital mechanisms for almost every process is evident across all industries and verticals. This is often especially true in financial services, where the legacy environment is many times unable to keep up with the rapidly shifting demands of the consumer. The constant pressure to provide complete, omnichannel delivery of customer-facing solutions to meet both regulatory and customer demands is putting enormous pressure on...
IoT is rapidly becoming mainstream as more and more investments are made into the platforms and technology. As this movement continues to expand and gain momentum it creates a massive wall of noise that can be difficult to sift through. Unfortunately, this inevitably makes IoT less approachable for people to get started with and can hamper efforts to integrate this key technology into your own portfolio. There are so many connected products already in place today with many hundreds more on the h...
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
Charles Araujo is an industry analyst, internationally recognized authority on the Digital Enterprise and author of The Quantum Age of IT: Why Everything You Know About IT is About to Change. As Principal Analyst with Intellyx, he writes, speaks and advises organizations on how to navigate through this time of disruption. He is also the founder of The Institute for Digital Transformation and a sought after keynote speaker. He has been a regular contributor to both InformationWeek and CIO Insight...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
To Really Work for Enterprises, MultiCloud Adoption Requires Far Better and Inclusive Cloud Monitoring and Cost Management … But How? Overwhelmingly, even as enterprises have adopted cloud computing and are expanding to multi-cloud computing, IT leaders remain concerned about how to monitor, manage and control costs across hybrid and multi-cloud deployments. It’s clear that traditional IT monitoring and management approaches, designed after all for on-premises data centers, are falling short in ...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...