Selected Articles from IEEE Xplore - September 2015

Introduction by Lee Stogner, President of the Vincula Group; Member, IEEE Internet of Things Initiative

We now have a Perfect Storm in the Internet of Things. This Perfect Storm is centered around what's called the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT. As an engineer who started his career some few decades ago in automation and industrial process control, I had to deal with technology that exceeded the cost of what my clients could afford for their projects. My clients were from a variety of industries that included manufacturing, utilities, infrastructure and government. All of these clients were concerned about the number of I/O points that it took to gather process information and the equipment required to control the functions that were involved. Integration of these systems required expensive proprietary networks that were limited in range from the process I/O locations and the computer systems. Computer processing capabilities were also greatly limited and expensive. One of my projects required a million dollar computer from a company in Massachusetts. This was in addition to the instrumentation, networks, dedicated controllers and installation costs required by the entire system. But at the end of the day, it all worked well. I look back today at those projects and realize that the processing power of the plant wide control system was less than a modern day Smart Phone. Could we have done better back then, the answer is yes. Our designs were a series of compromises in the number of I/O points and speed, memory and software and cost of the control system.

Fast forward to today, the Perfect Storm has arrived. Early sensors were made of wire, bi-metal strips, propellers, magnets and more. And they tended to rust. Costs were often in the thousands of dollars before installation and calibration. Today more and more sensors are made from semiconductors. Consumer grade sensors cost less than one dollar each. Commercial grade sensors depending on the variable measured and installation housing, costs less than one hundred dollars each in many cases. An example of today's sensors are in the Wearables that are used to promote good exercise.

Proprietary Networks that in many cases would cost over one hundred dollars per foot installed, now use industry standard Ethernet that cost just dollars per foot installed.

Finally, the computer system that integrates signals from the process with control algorithms and databases has dropped from millions down to tens of thousands. A PC made to industrial specifications costs less than twenty five thousand dollars. A bit more if the system has redundant processing and other backup components. We also have the option of processing the manufacturing data in the Cloud with computers that are leased by the month. There, the processing is fast and linked to Enterprise data systems such as SAP and Oracle. With this big picture view of manufacturing information, companies have the chance to drive improved efficiency in manufacturing and the Supply Chain. Countries have embraced these improvements with national initiatives such as China and Internet+ and Germany with Industrial 4.0. The Perfect Storm is here and will drive manufacturing, utilities, transportation, infrastructure, government, retail, agriculture and many other industries to new levels of efficiency, quality, lower cost and delivery.

The IEEE is an important part of this Perfect Storm of Computing. We have sponsored a series of Initiatives in,

- Internet of Things

- Cloud Computing

- Transportation Electrification

- Smart Grid

- Smart Cities

- Consumer Electronics

These Initiatives are complemented with conferences, workshops, education, technical publications and standards. For the Industrial Internet of Things, Workshops are available in,

- Safe Advanced Mobile Power

- IEEE Tech Industry Summit on IoT

The IEEE is a Global Forum in both the Internet of Things and the Industrial Internet of Things. Please visit the resources listed and let us know how we can help you make use of the Perfect Storm of Computing.


IEEE Xplore References

  1. D. Dujovne, T. Watteyne, X. Vilajosana and P. Thubert, "6TiSCH: deterministic IP-enabled industrial internet (of things)," in IEEE Communications Magazine, vol. 52, no. 12, pp. 36-41, December 2014.
  2. D. Conzon, P. Brizzi, P. Kasinathan, C. Pastrone, F. Pramudianto and P. Cultrona, "Industrial application development exploiting IoT vision and model driven programming," Intelligence in Next Generation Networks (ICIN), 2015 18th International Conference on, Paris, 2015, pp. 168-175.
  3. C. P. Kruger and G. P. Hancke, "Implementing the Internet of Things vision in industrial wireless sensor networks," 2014 12th IEEE International Conference on Industrial Informatics (INDIN), Porto Alegre, 2014, pp. 627-632.


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