Just like Internet of Things (IoT), industrial IoT is used in many industries and for a variety of applications. Technology that initially focused on automation, and optimizing operational efficiency, industrial IoT has unlocked many opportunities in industrial control, asset performance management, intelligent manufacturing, optimization and automation. This in turn has helped create new revenue models, find new ways of servicing customers and move towards an on-demand service model, aiding industrial transformation.
Understanding Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)
Compared to commercial IoT or the IoT known to most people, Industrial IoT is much more advanced, mainly due to the ubiquitousness of connected sensors or ‘IoT’ things in the industrial sector. In the industrial sector, you will find millions and millions of connected analytical, wired and wireless pressure, position, temperature, acoustic, flow, vibration and other sensors installed and operational.
By connecting to a variety of on-site and off-site software platforms, these sensors provide a lot of valuable information. A local intranet is generally used to enable on-site connections while the internet or a cloud-based service is used for offsite connections. Some of the things ensured by the software platforms include asset management, control and monitoring, and specialized systems for data analysis. To unveil problems, patterns and solutions, a dedicated team of experts use the information from IIoT to perform sophisticated big data analytics at remote data analysis centers. Want to know the potential ROI of using industrial IoT? Then read on.
IIoT helps industrial maintenance to evolve from a preventive process to a predictive one. Based on the data associated with various sensors, and other indicators related to an asset’s status, predictive maintenance predicts the end-of-life (EOL) of a machine. By accurately forecasting the EOL of a machine, predictive maintenance helps identify the best time to schedule and perform the maintenance. This helps optimize Overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) which results in a decent ROI.
By facilitating the collection of digital or big data related to industrial processes such as a product’s quality, and defects in a product line, and helping trace and track processes and materials that result in a particular quality, Industrial IoT (IIoT) improves the quality of industrial processes. By using the information provided by IIoT to replicate successful processes, organizations can prevent defects and malfunctions in their industrial processes, which in turn can help them achieve tangible ROI.
Smart Contracts and New Service/Revenue Models
As part of the industrial collaboration, contracts need to be established among enterprises and their objects. Moreover, enterprises must adhere to these contracts. Today, it is possible to establish and enforce smart contracts between objects across a variety of applications due to the blockchain technology and its integration with Internet of Things (IoT). Even though the practice is still in its infancy, using smart contracts between industrial objects is being considered as the next evolutionary step in automating industrial processes. Once smart contracts are fully active in the industrial world, they have the potential to generate considerable ROI, making the use of IIoT increasingly significant.