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Companies collaborate to develop IIoT wireless connectivity

30 July 2018

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Advantech, Behr Technologies (BTI), Hitachi Solutions America, and Microsoft today announced that the companies are collaborating to deliver wireless communications systems with unmatched scalability, reliability, and security for private industrial internet of things (IIoT) networks. Since no single technology provider can enable IIoT alone, this joint effort will provide the first mass-market, end-to-end wireless gateway system to ensure connectivity with sensors for production-level industrial and commercial applications. The system will deliver large scalability, the deepest possible building penetration, integration and interoperability with legacy systems, along with very long battery life for nodes.

This collaboration aims to meet growing demand in the marketplace for robust and comprehensive out-of-the-box wireless IIoT communications products to connect the various sensors used by industrial and commercial customers in their business intelligence efforts. The foundation for the joint effort is BTI MIOTY, a low-power, wide-area network (LPWAN) communications approach that is the first and only to use the ETSI standard telegram splitting ultra-narrow band (TS-UNB) technical specification for low-throughput networks, enabling organisations to deploy private IoT sensor networks with unprecedented capacity, high Quality-of-Service (QoS), and low total cost of ownership. Using industry-standard Advantech gateways, BTI MIOTY will transmit up to 1.5 million messages per day within a radius of 5–15km, with no carrier requirements. Layered atop this infrastructure, Hitachi Solutions’ IoT Service Hub will enable organisations to connect and monitor devices and analyse the data in real time to improve operational efficiencies.

First application focused on workforce safety

The first application resulting from this collaboration is a new and unique approach to workforce safety using the BTI MIOTY LPWAN wireless system on an industry-standard gateway. Using a wearable device to monitor the heart rate of workers in industrial high-risk environments, data on the health of hundreds of workers is transmitted over unlicensed, sub-gigahertz frequencies via BTI MIOTY to a single Advantech base station. From there, it is communicated to the Microsoft Cloud, where Hitachi Solutions’ IoT Service Hub can provide actionable insights on workers’ health and send alerts when workers are in danger. Employers, such as mining site operators, can deploy this end-to-end system to protect their workforce with unprecedented responsiveness at a fraction of the cost of previously available technologies.

Stephen Huang, associate vice president of Advantech’s Embedded IoT Group says: “Through this collaboration with Microsoft, Hitachi Solutions, and BTI, we are working to deliver an integrated IIoT solution. Our Edge Intelligence Server provides a device-to-cloud solution at the edge. With WISE-PaaS EdgeSense IoT software built into the gateway, we can provide connectivity and manageability at the edge to simplify IIoT applications.”

Albert Behr, chief executive officer of Behr Technologies Inc. says: “The BTI MIOTY contribution to the overall, end-to-end ecosystem with Microsoft, Hitachi Solutions, and Advantech gives customers an out-of-the-box IIoT solution that provides critical machine data and telemetry in areas they cannot currently access. BTI MIOTY has been specifically developed for massive and lowest-cost LPWAN communications and is poised to be the commercial standard for wireless IIoT connectivity. The use cases are endless and it will deliver a wireless IIoT solution that is unparalleled in the market.”

Craig Burbidge, senior vice president of Hitachi Solutions America says: “Through this collaboration, we can add our unique and advanced analytics-based business value to the solution. With our IoT Service Hub as the platform, customers will be able to aggregate and analyse equipment telemetry data in real time. The actionable insights provided will allow them to be more predictive and proactive, ensuring a safer and more productive environment with more efficient and cost-effective operations.”

Rashmi Misra, general manager, IoT Solutions at Microsoft, says: “With Azure services and BTI MIOTY, customers can implement cost-effective and highly scalable solutions to facilitate the ‘last mile’ of communication for messages delivered from sensors to the Cloud. Working with our broad partner ecosystem, we are ushering in a new era of IoT communication that will enable organisations around the world to realise the promise of industrial automation in ways that were not previously possible.”

Learn more at www.advantech.eu.

 
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