AI and data analytics can help the customer save time and money
Published by : Industrial Automation
Sandeep Prabhakar, Product Marketing Manager, Moxa India Industrial Networking Pvt Ltd.
Mainstream technologies such as AI and data analytics are present leaders. Or will newer forms of technology dominate 2021? Will 5G become real in 2021?
In recent years, many enterprises invested heavily on Industrial IoT and Industry 4.0 to transform their business operations. One key aspect to implement the IIoT is to digitalise and interconnect the industrial control systems so that big data can be utilised to create new business intelligence.
By adding more sensors to existing IIoT connectivity devices to collect additional data and sending them to a back-end AI platform for analysis, control standards can be established and predictive maintenance can be conducted.
With interconnected machines and remote cloud monitoring systems, AI and data analytics can help the customer save time and money and help them to focus on leveraging the insights withdrawn from the information to improve their productivity.
With IT and OT convergence, IT gets to collect the data from OT to analyse and build intelligent applications, OT can utilise the usable IT intelligence to optimise the operation.
Originally, ICS networks were physically isolated and almost immune to cyberattacks. With this transformation, more industrial systems are brought online to deliver big data and smart analytics through technological integrations. IT/OT convergence provides organisations with a clearer view of their industrial systems together with better process management. However, it also generates new cybersecurity risks due to the transition from closed to open systems.
Driven by convergence IT and OT, and the fact that OT environments haven’t traditionally been focused on security, with lots of insecure protocols, legacy operating systems and new OT-specific vulnerabilities being disclosed and exploited, Moxa foresees that Industrial cybersecurity will be dominating the future as targeted attacks on critical infrastructure have been increasing with huge loss of revenue.
While major telecom providers have successfully conducted 5G network trials, some rollouts in India are also planned in the second half of 2021 and the probability of it being delayed is high.
The arrival of 5G services would help boost the existing and new developments in industrial applications like Cloud enabled Remote applications for unmanned and harsh environments which need high bandwidth and are expected only after 3-4 years, while affordability of 5G enabled devices is a cause of concern.
What will be the wish list of the manufacturing industry in the new normal?
The 3 key aspects in the wish list of the manufacturing industry in the new normal will be:
Improve Productivity – Through the IIoT gathered I/O data to ensure machine operation, production managers can have a clearer picture of uptime, tuning, idle, and downtime hours within the day, and can thereby improve the OEE in real time.
Increase Production Yield – By adding more sensors to existing IoT devices to collect additional big data, variation control standards can be established and predictive maintenance can be conducted before variation becomes a big problem in order to avoid the production of defective products.
Improved Profitability – With improved OEE that eliminates bottlenecks at key equipment boosts production capacity and reduces production cycle, a shortened production cycle translates to more profitable production days.
The challenges in WFH culture for the manufacturing sector and steps to be future ready?
Work from home culture is acceptable in the IT sector while manufacturing has its own challenges as it is labour intensive, physical presence is needed. Supply chain also plays an important role as there has to be a tight knit coordination with suppliers and customers in order to maintain better operational efficiency. The O&M team also has to upgrade themselves with Secure Remote Access solutions so that their OEMs can provide remote services and diagnostics on the equipment when it is down. Downtime for system upgrade will impact on productivity and also loss of revenue.
The role of technology in catering to the demand for basic daily life solutions for safety at work and home?
With work from home being a norm in order to avoid close contact and enable social distancing, employees have been provided with laptops, internet and mobile connectivity and technologies like remote connectivity, VPN, virtual meetings using various platforms (Teams, Zoom, GoTo Meeting, Webex) have been playing an important role in everyday life to ensure the safety of employees as most of them are logged in from different locations.
Sandeep Prabhakar, E&C Engineer at Moxa is an experienced Product Marketing Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the industrial automation industry. He has over 15 years of experience in OT, and is skilled in Engineering, Business Development, Control Systems Design, Process Automation, and SCADA. Sandeep is also a Cybersecurity Evangelist and has initiated and won smart city projects. In his spare time he is a travel enthusiast and explorer.