What is the industrial internet of things? -Alibaba Cloud Developer Community

2020-05-14 482

introduction: IIoT(Industrial Internet of Things) is short for Industrial Internet of Things-the emergence of micro low-cost sensors and high-bandwidth wireless networks means that even the smallest devices can be connected as long as there is a certain level of digital intelligence. Monitor and track them, share their status data, and communicate with other devices. All these data can then be collected and analyzed to improve the efficiency of business processes.
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IIoT(Industrial Internet of Things) is short for Industrial Internet of Things-the emergence of micro low-cost sensors and high-bandwidth wireless networks means that even the smallest devices can be connected as long as there is a certain level of digital intelligence. Monitor and track them, share their status data, and communicate with other devices. All these data can then be collected and analyzed to improve the efficiency of business processes.

IIoT is important because it helps enterprises make decisions faster and better. The changes it brings are also closely related to the ongoing digital transformation projects of many enterprises.

IIoT should not be confused with consumer IoT, but the core concept of consumer IoT is basically the same as IIoT: using sensors and automation to improve efficiency.

According to relevant data, by 2025, the number of connections to the global industrial Internet of Things will reach 13.8 billion, of which the number of connections to Greater China will reach 4.1 billion, accounting for 1/3 of the global market. At the same time, according to data from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the annual income growth rate of China's industrial Internet of Things market is about 25%, and it exceeded 300 billion yuan in 2018. This indicates that the Internet of Things and the industrial internet of things are ushering in a period of rapid development.

IIoT applications

if the application of the internet of things in the industrial industry is abstracted, it can be summarized into four levels: data collection and display, basic data analysis and management, deep data analysis and application, industrial control.

▶Data collection and display: data collected from industrial device sensors is transmitted to the cloud platform and displayed in a visualized manner.

▶Basic data analysis and management: it is inclined to the stage of general analysis tools, does not involve data analysis based on vertical field in-depth industry knowledge, and is based on device data collected by the cloud platform, some SaaS applications are generated, such as alerts for abnormal device performance indicators, fault code queries, and association analysis of fault causes. Based on these data analysis results, there will also be some general equipment management functions, such as switching on and off of equipment, adjusting status, remote locking and unlocking, etc. These management applications vary according to specific field requirements.

▶Deep data analysis and application: deep data analysis involves industry knowledge in specific fields and needs to be implemented by industry experts in specific fields. Data analysis models are established based on the fields and characteristics of devices.

▶Industrial control: the purpose of the industrial internet of things is to implement precise control over industrial processes. Based on the aforementioned process of sensor data collection, display, modeling, analysis, application and so on, decision-making is formed in the cloud, and converted into control instructions that can be understood by industrial devices to operate industrial devices, achieve accurate information interaction and efficient collaboration between industrial equipment resources.

The industrial field includes many vertical industries, and the characteristics of each industry vary greatly. The combination of the Internet of Things and each industry should also be adjusted according to the characteristics of the industry itself. Although it is mainly adopted by large enterprises at present, it may be more widely adopted with the decrease of hardware and service prices. Current Industrial IoT applications:

intelligent factory

with the help of machine learning algorithms and IIoT networks, real-time and historical data are obtained from sensors and other related sources to predict various aspects of machines, so as to ensure the effective operation of the machine and reduce the maintenance cost. It can also enhance the effectiveness of facility management. Manufacturing equipment is easily worn and affected by specific conditions. Sensors combined with industrial Internet of Things software can monitor temperature, vibration and other factors that may lead to lower than optimal operating conditions. By ensuring the specific working environment of machines, manufacturers can save energy, reduce costs, eliminate machine downtime and improve operation efficiency.

In addition, IIoT leaders are combining the Internet of Things with analysis to continuously monitor key performance indicators of health and security to ensure a better working environment. If the indicator is abnormal (such as the number of accidents in the factory), it can be solved immediately. IoT devices (including smart cameras, smart sensors and smart beacons) also enhance the security of employees and assets, thus providing a new level of intelligence for safe operations.

Logistics and Supply Chain

the industrial Internet of Things creates highly connected supply chain "assets" by using networked devices, thus improving end-to-end visibility of goods and providing access to real-time supply chain information. Information can be retrieved from a series of sensors, including GPS, temperature and humidity. By connecting factories and suppliers, all parties related to the supply chain can track interdependence, material flow and manufacturing cycle time. These data will help manufacturers predict problems and reduce inventory and capital needs.

As a product of a new manufacturing technology, industrial internet is called the new entrance of the internet of things era by many insiders. As long as you can achieve 1% efficiency improvement, it will produce immeasurable economic value, and 1% can magically enter a huge economy.

"Industry" is one of the most important trends in today's science and technology. Innovative integration in computing and communication, industry and its "intelligent" equipment will not only change the interaction between users and machines, but also revolutionize the way machines contact each other.

IIoT will greatly change the future, not only for industrial systems, but also for many people. If we can give full play to our industrial capabilities, many people will have the opportunity to improve their career and living standards because they have created countless value-added opportunities.

IIoT challenges

the service life of IIoT devices is much longer than that of consumer goods. Michael bell (Mike bell), executive vice president of the Internet of Things and equipment, estimates that the average service life is 7 to 10 years. Even if it exceeds the original scale and service life, the implementation process is very complicated.

▶Lack of standardization: There are many different formats and technologies that can meet the different requirements for Machine communication between connecting devices. Physical layer technologies such as Sigfox and ZigBee, and software layers such as Weave and Iotivity are essential for a fully running IIoT environment, and they must be interoperable.

▶Integration with traditional technologies: Many older devices are not designed to provide clear and readable data formats for modern IIoT technologies. Therefore, factory controllers decades ago may need some modifications, to communicate with the complex new IIoT infrastructure.

▶Security: any device is controlled by network communication. IIoT cannot avoid this because it is easy to be attacked by hackers on the Internet. Like the consumption of IoT, IIoT also has many security problems. Think of Mirai botnet, which is a huge DDoS weapon composed of cameras with poor security and other devices. In addition to the possibility of using damaged IIOT devices to create large botnets, there is also a problem that vulnerabilities can be exploited to steal private data on the network, which is another attack method. IIoT must address these concerns and face the risk of network attacks on key national infrastructures.

5G is the best partner of IIoT

IIoT is still mainly in the experimental and pilot stages, with only a few large manufacturers investing heavily. As sensors become smaller and cheaper, especially after 5G networks become more popular, 5G features large bandwidth, low latency, and wide coverage, this makes some industrial internet scenarios that cannot be realized by traditional 4G networks possible in the 5G era, and people's interest in IIoT may continue to grow.

For example, in the port port, when the steel boom transfers and loads large cargo between the port and the ship, it needs to minimize the delay and precision error, at the same time, it was only an imagination in the past to be able to detect abnormal situations at the first time and respond quickly at the edge side. For another example, high-temperature and high-risk steel plants urgently need to be operated by no one, and can instantly and accurately pour thousands of degrees of steel water. The delay is as low as several milliseconds, which is also a fable in the 4G era.

You may have questions: since the preceding scenarios have such strict requirements on network latency and stability, why not adopt stable and high-speed wired mode? In fact, the wired method seems to be simple and feasible, but in fact, there are many problems. Because the wired network deployment is relatively complex, the subsequent upgrade and transformation also involves a lot of work; Moreover, the use of wired network is limited by conditions, while the industrial Internet of Things environment is complex and diverse, wired networks cannot be deployed anywhere in need. Comparatively speaking, the wireless network represented by 5G is a more economical and efficient connection mode.

Equipment Investment in the industrial field is huge. Whether it is machine tools, production lines or mechanical equipment, the shutdown caused by failures in the production process often affects the whole production line and even the whole product delivery cycle.

To ensure stability, the control systems in the industrial field are mainly local and a large number of hardware and software systems are deployed. On the one hand, the whole control system is very complex and the investment is huge; On the other hand, it also limits the flexibility and scalability of the system. In today's rapidly changing consumer demand, the update of the production system cannot keep up with the changes in consumer demand, which will also lead to missing many new opportunities.

In addition, the application of current mobile communication system in the field of industrial internet of things is not deeply involved. Although 4G has been greatly improved in network speed, it can meet the needs of users to watch videos at any time, however, there is still much room for improvement in network reliability and latency, which cannot meet the requirements of industrial scenarios.

4G applications in industrial scenarios are more often used in scenarios with low real-time requirements as a way to upload data to the cloud. For example, the machine tool equipment in the factory collects data every 5-10 seconds. The data is generally collected into a unified terminal, which is sent to the cloud platform through 4G.

The technical standard of 5G can meet these requirements of communication systems in the industrial field well with extremely low latency, ensuring the requirements of real-time monitoring and control in the industrial field; High reliable network quality, it ensures the stability requirements of industrial systems; Large bandwidth can realize HD 3D video and even AR transmission, greatly improving the operation accuracy in the field of remote control.

For the industrial field, a communication system with high reliability and low latency is of vital importance. For a long time, the application of the industrial internet of things can only stay at the data collection and display on the surface and some management functions extended from it. It is difficult to involve core fields such as industrial system control, among them, the stability and delay of the communication system cannot meet the requirements are the main constraints.

In the view of research institutions, the potential of IIoT is limitless. According to a report released by GSMA Intelligence, the future market opportunities for 5G and the internet of things in the telecommunications industry will depend more on enterprises than individual users. From the perspective of the internet of things, although consumer electronics and smart home and other scenarios are the main force of the internet of things, the potential of the future enterprise market is limitless. From manufacturing to power industry, 5G and the Internet of Things will create new opportunities to meet a variety of enterprise needs.

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