Vol 1 Issue 7
Editor:  Brad Magee ( brad.magee@ipulpmedia.com)
Apr 2019


Imagine it is time to go home.  You leave the office and go out to the parking lot, get in your car, and start your engine.  This starts the following sequence:
  • Your car tells your house to set the thermostat to a nice comfortable temperature so that by the time you get there it is very pleasant
  • Your stove preheats to 450 so that when you arrive you can put your chicken breast in without delay
  • Your refrigerator notices you are on your way home and notifies your car that you are low on milk, sending you navigation instructions to a market on the way
  • When you get to the market, it knows you are there and sends you a text message that the hazelnut ice cream you crave is on sale
  • As you approach the house, your television notices and turns on the channel to the baseball game you want to see
  • When you open the door, the lights turn on
This sequence is happening today because the dumb things of the past (cars, appliances, homes, stores) are now smart.  They can measure and communicate.  The means of communication is a common data communication infrastructure; the Internet.  We now have smart things connected by the Internet.  This is the Internet of Things (IoT).
For information technology (IT), this is a very new development.  They are being hired at a rapid pace to meet the demand of those who want a smarter connected world.  When they look at the industrial realm that we work in, they think their new technology can help us the same way.  It is easy to see why.  In the February issue of InTech magazine, Christopher Logue says
When IT people come into the plant for the first time, they are usually shocked by what they find.  Many of the younger technicians have never seen some of the technologies they encounter.  "This computer is still running Windows XP." "Where do I find a driver for a dot matrix printer? I do not even know what that is." "What's Modbus?" "Is everything this old?"
Naturally, they believe their newer IoT technology can be helpful to industrial facilities.  They call this the industrial Internet of things (IIoT).
To us, this isn't new.  We have used smart connected systems for a very long time.  We have had sensors in our process send us tons of data rapidly, process it, send signals automatically to valves and motors, share it on a network, and allow us to be smarter through automation.
In prior articles I highlighted how the Internet has made our industry different.  How is IIoT different?  The problem with that question is that before we can answer we need to know what IIoT is. 
In Logue's article he explains how a WirelessHart adapter can be added to a device to put it in a network using wireless Ethernet routers that are familiar to IT technicians.  The device is being made smarter.  He says this makes IIoT implementations practical and possible.  However, the Internet is nowhere to be found in this example.  The public communication infrastructure that connects IoT is not used in this case.  Does that mean that anything using IP addresses and switches are IIoT?
In that same issue, an article on IIoT remote monitoring explains how a virtual private network can enable Internet connection from a tablet, smart phone, or PC to a programmable logic controller (PLC).  This allows someone remotely to see what is happening in the PLC and make logic changes.  In this example, there is no device that is being made smarter.  The existing devices are being connected by the Internet.  This suggests any industrial connection using the Internet is IIoT.
If devices are smarter with no Internet, is that IIoT? If devices are no smarter but connected with Internet, is that IIoT?  Which is it? 
What is happening is that IT terms are being used to describe industrial process automation technology assuming there is no preceding industrial process automation technology.  That leads to a confusing application of terms.   Peter Zornio says in the February issue of Control magazine:
For example, an edge gateway used to be called just a gateway, while the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is really just SCADA over the Internet.  However, as the IT community discovered IoT and digital transformation technologies, they started coming up with sexier terms for what we'd already been doing in process automation for 30 or 40 years.
Some are defining IIoT as sensors in the cloud.  The vision is to have a sensor connect directly to the Internet so the data can be more easily shared without having to go through control system gateways.  There are obvious advantages to this approach. 

Consider the application of wireless acoustic transmitters to detect failing steam traps.  These smarter "things" measure something that were previously undetectable.  Their data can be sent through the Internet to cloud computers to analyze and identify failures.  Experts offsite can determine what actions to be taken and inform the facility of their recommendations.  In this application we have smarter "things" using the Internet for connectivity.  This seems to fit the description of IIoT.
However, there are caveats.  If there is no demilitarized zone (DMZ) between the process and the Internet, how do we ensure security?  What is it we want to put in the cloud? Sensor data? Control?  Can we do control with non-deterministic data communication and latency?  Is such an approach desirable? Do we want to bypass a control system that provides fast processing local to the process with security in order to use a cool Internet technology?  That is why the steam trap application often is a separate system, not integrated into the control system.  It is a one-way stream to the cloud with no automatic feedback. 
Then we come to an article "At the IIoT crossroads" in the same February issue of Control magazine.  The article is about the application of data analytics, such as statistical and neural network models, the danger of doing so without considering first principle process knowledge, use of wireless measurements to help PID loops, and connecting to more data to derive new metrics.   Given the title, it sounds like any application of data analytics in industry is IIoT.
In articles such as these, it appears IIoT is anything new; wireless communication, smarter instrumentation, Internet connectivity, data analytics, and more.  Any or all of this seems to be what IIoT means.  This makes it hard to figure out what IIoT really is.
Consider the following statement from Smart Industry magazine in their Q4 2018 issue: "IoT is propelling us from an era of information scarcity to an age of information abundance ..."  First, this statement does not distinguish between IIoT and IoT.  I agree that the sequence of events I began this article with greatly increases information flow from cars, homes, and appliances, so that statement is true for IoT.  The statement is not true for IIoT; the number of sensors in industrial facilities and data in networks was not in scarcity before the Internet.  It is true that more of that data is flowing across the Internet, but the premise of the statement is false.  It is problematic when IoT and IIoT are being used interchangeably while IIoT is not defined.
In conclusion, IoT has a clear meaning.  It is easy to see how our lives outside of the office are different than they were when we were in our youth.  Discerning what IIoT is more mysterious.  Over time as more application of these technologies in our industry proliferation, IIoT should become easier to define.

Pat Dixon is Southwest Region Engineering Manager for Global Process Automation (GPA), a controls system integration firm.  


Industry 4.0: Powering Ahead with Solid State Batteries

With the promise of greater operational efficiency, Industry 4.0 adoption continues to grow as companies use more IoT devices. This is expected to continue with  analysts reporting rapid growth in Industry 4.0 and predicting it will reach approx. USD 155.30 billion by 2024. The main benefit of this connected ecosystem is the ability to access real-time data that can be used to improve operational efficiency. However, this brings its own challenges. All these devices have sensors that require efficient, safe powering - often in hostile locations. In this article, Ilika will look at how solid state batteries can meet this need and provide autonomous power to the various sensors used in Industry 4.0 - even those in the most difficult environments.
Technological advances in sensors have resulted in smart sensors producing real-time data which can help companies:
  • Connect their production stages
  • Refine logistics
  • Optimize safety
  • Implement a Predictive Maintenance program

Read the entire article here .

Denis Pasero is the Product Commercialization Manager at Ilika Technologies.


Machine Monitoring: The Strategy to Achieve Exponential Efficiency Gains    
It's time to embrace our new manufacturing reality: data is at the center of everything. And monitoring machines can be the central driver to unheard of productivity.

Since the industrial revolution, manufacturers have been churning out goods which have bettered the livelihoods of billions of people. Machines have been fed raw material and transformed them into finished goods hundreds or thousands of times more valuable. The engine of society has hummed along; manufacturing powered the transformation of mankind's way of living the last few centuries.

With the birth of the "information age", a new paradigm has emerged. Instead of physical, tangible objects, our most valuable assets now are ethereal and exist solely in the digital realm. Information is king - knowledge about individuals, organizations, and groups can now refine existing processes to be thousands or millions of times more effective. Information can guide us in what decisions to make, cutting out the many headaches involved with trial and error. "Life experience", so famed by oracles old and new, can now partially be substituted by rigorous, data-driven insight.

Read the entire article here.

Lou Zhang is the Chief Data Scientist at MachineMetrics.

A connected factory 
leads to smarter manufacturing
As Ericsson's Head of Advanced Industries, Erik Josefsson leads the company's global Industrial IoT & 5G offerings for the manufacturing and process industries. Erik's work focuses on the edge of industrial digitalization with 5G, IoT and Artificial Intelligence for factories, warehouses and mines. Erik's team explores how industries can transform 5G/IoT, what comes after Industry 4.0, the LTE path to 5G, industrial ecosystems and strategic partnerships.

What is shadow IoT? 

How to mitigate the risk

Shadow IoT definition

Shadow IoT refers to internet of things (IoT) devices or sensors in active use within an organization without IT's knowledge. The best example is from before the days of bring your own device (BYOD) policies when employees used personal smartphones or other mobile devices for work purposes. "Shadow IoT is an extension of shadow IT, but on a whole new scale," says Mike Raggo, CSO at 802 Secure. "It stems not only from the growing number of devices per employee but also the types of devices, functionalities and purposes."

Employees have been connecting personal tablets and mobile devices to the company network for years. Today, employees are increasingly using smart speakers, wireless thumb drives and other IoT devices at work as well. Some departments install smart TVs in conference rooms or are using IoT-enabled appliances in office kitchens, such as smart microwaves and coffee machines.

Article topics include:
  • How prevalent is shadow IoT?
  • What are shadow IoT's risks?
  • Why aren't most shadow IoT devices secure?
  • Have criminal hackers successfully targeted shadow IoT devices?
  • 3 ways to mitigate shadow IoT security risks
  • Anything shadowy is a problem
Read the entire article here.

James A. Martin is a seasoned tech journalist and blogger based in San Francisco and winner of the 2014 ASBPE National Gold award for his CIO.com blog. He writes CIO.com's Living the Tech Life blog and is also a content marketing consultant.

Making buildings smart with IoT

Too hot in the summer, too cold in the winter, too dark, too stuffy: People shouldn't have to put up with such conditions in hotels, clinics, offices and schools. It should be comfortable, well-utilized and, naturally, safe and secure at all times. The facility manager of a building for hundreds of people has to have eyes and ears everywhere in order to recognize and fix problems promptly. Fortunately, the Internet of Things (IoT) can help.


Wireless sensors measure room temperature, humidity, brightness and CO2 levels. They are easy to retrofit without laying new cabling or ripping apart walls and can make buildings smart at little cost. The sensor readings are transmitted to the cloud via an encrypted Internet connection. Once there, the data is analyzed before being transmitted to a building management software program.

The facility manager can use it to monitor all the buildings she's responsible for. Each sensor in a specific building, floor or room can be selected in order to check both current and recorded readings. Should the carbon dioxide levels in a meeting room, hotel lobby or waiting room rise above preset limits, a service technician will automatically receive an SMS or email.

Read the entire article here.

Pamela Buchwald has been part of the Telekom cosmos since 2016 and is very familiar with the Internet of Things. From general IoT trends to industry know-how and connected mobility, the blog highlights exciting topics related to connected things. 

For more information, visit Deutsche Telekom.


There are always people beyond a company's success - the employee remains the bedrock of progress. Not surprisingly, employers strive to deliver decent and safe working conditions to their subordinates. Today, when the number of work-related fatalities  increases every month, the employee's safety stays the number one priority in any organization where occupational risk factors exist.

A viable approach to ensuring employees' safety in the Industry 4.0 era is the internet of things (IoT). Numerous  IoT use cases in business show that this technology brings both employers and employees' convenience and productivity. But what about safety? Let's explore several real-life examples of how both technology giants and small startups leverage IoT to help employees stay out of harm's way.

Article topics include:
  • Nation Waste and IBM Provide a Full-Scale Solution for Workers' Safety
  • Fujitsu Presents a Set of Wearables Aimed at Worker Safety Advancement
  • Small Companies Also on Guard of Employee Safety
  • Safety and Productivity: Two Sides of the Same Coin
Read the entire article here .

Alex Paretski is a Technology Observer at Itransition, a custom software development company headquartered in Denver, Colorado. He specializes in exploring IT innovations and enjoys following the latest business trends. Alex also considers that knowledge and research are the most important constituent parts in the process of making the right decision.

Coming up next month...
  • Industry 4.0 - Powering Ahead With Solid State Batteries
  • Smart IoT Investments In Little Things Lead To Big Payoffs
  • 6 Steps to a More Secure IoT
  • and much more


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