Understand how Industrial IoT solutions can help customers automate data capture from any number of connected machines or edge devices through use cases.
IIoT for Manufacturing: Condition Monitoring of Critical Assets
The manufacturing segment accounts for about 50 percent of the total Industrial IoT market in the U.S. The main adoption drivers for Industrial IoT solutions in manufacturing include cost reduction, shorter time to market, and mass customization. Several manufacturing plants are leveraging the potential of Industrial IoT solutions for condition-based monitoring, asset tracking, and dynamic routing and scheduling. For instance, aerospace manufacturers are deploying Industrial IoT devices to improve operational efficiencies and overcome manufacturing delays.
Use Case: Predictive maintenance and condition monitoring play important roles manufacturing. For instance, in automotive, chemical, semiconductor, and aerospace applications, mineral deposits can cause heat exchanger conduits to clog. These complete blockages can cause serious problems that lead to manufacturing errors and hours of downtime. To overcome these challenges, Industrial IoT devices such as access points and radio modules play a major role. Threshold values can be defined by measuring and gathering the temperature differentials upstream and downstream of the heat exchanger in order to establish an alert system that notifies employees when the first signs of clogging occur.
Reliable infrastructure communication is key to making sure Industrial IoT devices stay connected. Access points and radio modules must be robust. Access points such as AP-Wi-Fi-1200 by PCTEL are best suited here. They have a rugged design suitable for deployments between -40°C and +65°C. For outdoor use, access points support -40°C to +55°C with full solar loading of 1200W/m2 and withstand wind gusts up to 165 mph when properly mounted.
Similarly, radio modules such as RM-Wi-Fi-AC-2x2-HP 802.11ac Wave 2 by PCTEL are rugged and dependable. They have high transmitting output power and support all 802.11ac channel definitions—including 80 MHz, 80+80 MHz, and 160 MHz channels—making them suitable for tracking real-time employee and equipment data to increase work efficiency.
IIoT for Oil & Gas: Drilling Management and Pipeline Monitoring
The large amounts of data that are constantly collected from multiple sources in the oil and gas industry are difficult to standardize and analyze. Adopting Industrial IoT applications can improve the efficiency of capital and operating expenditures while reducing the negative effects of widely spread assets.
Use Case: Pipelines are an integral part of the oil and gas industry that are susceptible to multiple structural failures, such as corrosion, cracks, and leakages. Industrial IoT devices equipped with communication technology such as LPWAN and cellular are widely used to gather granular telemetry data in the field. Industrial IoT devices with LPWAN technology can connect a massive number of geographically dispersed metering points with minimal infrastructure. These smart sensor devices provide critical information pertaining to pipeline operating conditions and structural health.
Wireless communication sensors from PCTEL can detect air quality, temperature, relative humidity, acceleration, angular rate of change, magnetic field, range, and sound. In addition, they offer multiple radio connectivity technology options, including cellular, LoRa, Bluetooth® 5, and NFC, as well as 802.15.4 support. These sensor devices can operate in a range of -40°C to +85°C and are easy to install.
IIoT for Utilities: Smart Metering
The adoption of Industrial IoT for smart metering and other grid applications, based on emerging technologies such as NB-IoT, LoRa, and LTE-M, is on the rise in the utility industry as a whole. In addition, the power industry’s demand for smart meters, smart power grids, and smart water management has increased due to the global inclination toward renewable energy.
Use Case: Smart meters enable automatic meter reading for consumers and companies. They can monitor electricity consumption in real time and automatically transmit the data to alert electricity companies of power outages. Additionally, smart meters allow utilities and consumers to analyze consumption and gain critical insights.
Industrial IoT antennas are widely used in the utility industry to build communication networks between devices. PCTEL optimizes various types of antennas to fit the environment and requirements of the application. Rugged and designed to withstand high vibration and extreme temperatures, they are also used in process automation, transit systems, asset tracking and monitoring, utility smart grids, and more. These antennas provide reliable wireless connectivity and general-purpose sensing that enables real-time data sharing in the utility sector.