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Industrial Ethernet Book 104

regulations regarding the protection of data and information? Staff As more technology-based devices are added to the network, is the right IT staff on hand? Are other employees who are tech savvy available to help with installation and monitoring? Is software or remote monitoring needed to keep tabs on devices in other locations? Once these key elements are assessed and questions answered, organizations should take steps to: • Enable communication between devices • Ensure operational efficiencies across the infrastructure • Provide a secure platform for device communication Communication between devices Drives, sensors, PLCs, panel meters and other automation equipment are built to last years – even decades. Trouble is they often communicate via proprietary protocols that commonly use RS-232/422/485 serial cables. While these serial protocols are efficient and were often written for a specific application, many of these applications never included 24/7 monitoring across TCP/IP networks. In order to bring these devices into the Connected Factory, Industry 4.0 and/or IIoT paradigm, an organization’s engineers must first ensure that the devices can communicate with the other equipment on the factory floor. Companies looking to connect devices from disparate manufacturers can now choose advanced HMIs, protocol converters and other automation products that natively speak different protocols. These industrial products enable devices to communicate regardless of physical medium and offer industrial fluency and multi-protocol support. Ensure operational efficiencies Operational efficiencies can be accomplished in a number of ways, one of which is using data collected from monitoring points along a manufacturing line to minimize waste and downtime. As technology continues to improve, these status points will include an increased volume of information from a wider range of sources. Managed Ethernet switches will be able to report on the flow of data throughout the facility in the same way that sensors on assembly lines can report a product’s status on a production line. This expanded collection of operational data enables organizations to make data actionable by using visual management solutions to collect, record and display critical Key Performance Indicator (KPI) and Andon messages. Displaying this critical performance data in real time helps to drive productivity and increase throughput. This concept is not limited to connecting, communicating and monitoring within an organization. This concept can also be extended to include the supply and distribution chain to present a comprehensive view of the entire operation. Secure platform for communication Security has traditionally meant physical isolation of automation equipment and networks. If nothing is connected to automation equipment, the threat of security breaches is fairly low. Connection-free facilities are few and far between as more organizations continue to expand their enterprise networks into factory settings. As organizations embrace this new reality, security should be addressed through careful network planning and use of IP address best practices. Routers can be deployed within a network to limit network traffic to specific types of traffic or to specific users, minimizing the risk of a cyber-attack. Another tactic is the implementation of NAT (Network Address Translation). NAT is a technique that obscures devices on a network from inbound access, but doesn’t affect traffic on a network. Finally, using VPNs or tunneling appliances also makes factory-to-factory, supply chain-to-factory, or factory-to- distributor communication secure by creating virtual “tunnels” to transmit sensitive data through. Overall implementation benefits The efficiency of the Connected Factory, Industry 4.0 and/or IIoT model isn’t derived from the sheer volume of connections, but from more valuable connections, and the competitive edge gained by the sharing of information between devices and humans. Seamless communication with operators, control systems and software applications, combined with practical networking options and support for native features and protocols, deliver exponential meaning to data extracted from industrial devices. These capabilities can take automation and remote management to new levels, thereby making this vision a reality. With the thoughtful integration of supporting components that are designed specifically for this goal, the ability to connect, monitor and control will: • Extend equipment lifespan: increase the value of legacy equipment with powerful protocol conversion • Improve process visibility: gain insight and drive productivity with data logging and communication capabilities • Push control to the edge: scale systems management with control capabilities at the device instead of the central office These results not only reduce total cost of ownership and speed deployment, but also provide more robust end-to-end functionality across a wide variety of applications. Technology report by Red Lion Controls. 2.2018 industrial ethernet book


Industrial Ethernet Book 104
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