Industrial Automation Using Internet of Things

Industrial Automation Using Internet of Things

Samyak Jain (National Institute of Technology Karnataka, Surathkal, India) and K. Chandrasekaran (National Institute of Technology Karnataka, Surathkal, India)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 37
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0373-7.ch002


This chapter presents a comprehensive view of Industrial Automation using internet of things (IIoT). Advanced Industries are ushering in a new age of physical production backed by the information-based economy. The term Industrie 4.0 refers to the 4th paradigm shift in production, in which intelligent manufacturing technology is interconnected with physical machines. IIoT is basically a convergence of industrial systems with advanced, near-real-time computing and analytics, powered by low cost and low power sensing devices leveraging global internet connectivity. The key benefits of Industrial IoT systems are a) improved operational efficiency and productivity b) reduced maintenance costs c) improved asset utilization, monitoring and maintenance d) development of new business models e) product innovation and f) enhanced safety. Key parameters that impact Industrial Automation are a) Security b) Data Integrity c) Interoperability d) Latency e) Scalability, Reliability, and Availability f) Fault tolerance and Safety, and g) Maintainability, Serviceability, and Programmability.
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Internet of Things

The term Internet of things (IoT) was coined in 1999 by Kevin Ashton of P&G (Procter & Gamble). IoT basically is an interconnection of objects such as appliances, devices, vehicles and other items, broadly termed as “things”. It comprises of devices such as sensors and actuators, hardware and firmware electronics, system and application software, and finally the connectivity which “enables” objects to link together and interchange data. Each “thing” has an address to uniquely identify the object and an ability to connect and operate with existing internet infrastructure. As per the estimates, IoT will span approximately 30 billion objects by 2020. The global market value of IoT is estimated at $7.1 trillion growing at a healthy compounded annual growth rate. IoT is blurring the lines between the physical and digital world. This meshed world is popularly known as “phygital” world. IoT enables “things” to be sensed, configured, monitored and operated (controlled) remotely leveraging the existing internet infrastructure. The key benefits of IoT are improved operational efficiency and productivity through automation, energy conservation, better precision and accuracy, improved safety and security and economic benefits like increased revenue and reduced expenses with reduced human intervention. Further, IoT is slated to improve end-user experience, engagement and satisfaction.

Industrial Internet of Things

The term Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) was defined by General Electric [GE] in 2012. Industrial Internet is basically embedding of devices such as sensors, actuators and other similar instrumentation in machines to create a world of Smart Machines. IIoT, in a true sense provides a platform to converge global industrial systems using low-cost/low-power sensing devices that generate “Big Data” [High volume, High Velocity and High Variety] by adopting advanced analytics and computing. The platform is an interconnected mesh comprising of Machine-to-Machine [M2M] and People-to-Machine [P2M] and Machine-to-People [M2P]. IIoT meshes the “Industrial” world with “Digital” world and has the potential to transform and automate global Industries. The paradigm shift being “industrial data” as the source of competitive advantage which can be processed “anywhere” in a “hyper-connected” world. IIoT provides capability to manufacturing organizations to collect, aggregate and analyze large amounts of sensitive machine data in near real time mode to configure, monitor, manage and maintain machine performance and availability. Further, aggregated machine performance can improve efficiency of connected Factories/ Plants/ Assembly lines. Finally, the data collected could itself be smart and route itself to right users/ user community for real-time decision making. Figure 1 depicts the Components of an Industrial IoT Solution.

Figure 1.

Components of industrial IoT solutions


IIoT has tremendous potential, an estimate suggests that IIoT Solutions could add $32.3 trillion to global GDP. This represents a 46% of global economy today. The key elements of Industrial IIoT Solutions (Peter & Marco, 2012) are:

  • Intelligent/ Smart Machines: Connected machines, fleets (e.g. airplanes, vehicles), facilities (buildings) and networks with sensors, actuators and application software.

  • Advanced Analytics: Combination of descriptive, predictive and prescriptive algorithms to generate real time insights for improved decision making and high end automation. Advanced Analytics requires deep understanding of both domain and attribute/ feature data.

  • People: Connecting people anywhere, anytime with any-device using any-path/any network. This is also termed as Internet of People.

Figure 2 depicts the typical data flow from Connected Machines in the form of an Industrial IoT Data loop.

Figure 2.

Industrial IoT data loop


Gartner predicts that by 2021 a million IoT devices will probably be installed every hour. Further, Gartner has also forecasted that there shall be 35 Billion connected “things” on the internet by 2020 and that a large proportion of these devices (47%) will be intelligent devices.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Industrial Automation: Industrial automation is the use of advanced information technologies to manage processes and machines in an industry to improve operational efficiency, productivity, flexibility and safety.

Internet of Things: Internet of Things is an emerging technology aimed at inter-connecting disparate objects to interchange data - it comprises of sensors and actuators, hardware and firmware electronics, system and application software, and finally the connectivity which “enables” objects to link together and interchange data.

Industrial Internet of Things: Industrial Internet of Things is an emerging technology aimed at embedding devices such as sensors, actuators and other similar instrumentation in machines to create a world of Smart Machines.

Smile Curve Manufacturing Theory: Smile Curve Manufacturing Theory suggests that processes at the end of production value chain i.e. Product Research and Design and Product Marketing and Support functions drive higher financial value as compared to the manufacturing function that supposedly creates least value.

Command and Control Operations Centre: A command and control Operations center, also known as a situation room, centralizes the monitoring, control, and command of a manufacturing organization’ overall operations.

Collaborative Business Models: Emerging Collaboration business models between Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and Manufacturing Organizations where the OEMs supply machine’ on- lease, monitor and maintain using service contracts. OEMs transform from machine sellers to sellers of machine services and Manufacturing Organizations become consumers of machine services rather than machine owners.

Condition Based Monitoring: Condition Based Monitoring is a form of maintenance that involves sensors to measure the real-time performance of an asset while the asset is operating, The data gathered is analyzed to monitor the asset performance, identity patterns/ trends and predict probability of failures based on asset’ current state.

Industrie 4.0: Industrie 4.0 is the the fourth paradigm shift in manufacturing industry, in which intelligence is built into manufacturing ushering in an era of Smart Industries. Industrie 4.0 is really a “digital” revolution that uses high degree of digital technologies and automation to create a vision for the future of manufacturing.

Intelligent Optimized Machine: Intelligent Optimized machine is a machine that operates at peak performance and enables both operating and maintenance costs to be minimized.

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