Industrial Internet brings huge changes, benefits to industry

Control Engineering International: Benefits of industrial Internet are many, according to Rich Carpenter, chief technology officer, GE Intelligent Platforms, in comments to Control Engineering China.

10/15/2013


Rich Carpenter is chief technology officer of GE Intelligent Platforms. Courtesy: Control Engineering ChinaThe benefits of industrial Internet are many. What is industrial Internet? What can those in automation get from industrial Internet and how? Rich Carpenter, chief technology officer of GE Intelligent Platforms, explained these concepts to Control Engineering China, during a recent visit to Beijing.

Third revolution of Internet

Carpenter predicted great changes for this “age of industrial Internet.” Recently, he explained to Control Engineering China: “From the first Internet revolution, consumers interacted with the Internet to get information. With the second iteration Internet, e-commerce and business were established. Now the third Internet revolution is underway, the so-called industrial Internet.” As industrial equipment is connected to Internet, he explained, people and equipment are better connected via Internet technologies, resulting in higher productivity and higher reliability. “That is the core benefit to customers. Industrial Internet also can resolve challenges related to industrial automation by using knowledge resources across entire industries. We think it can bring a new ecosystem to the Internet.”

People share information over the Internet, and today, video also can be shared, Carpenter noted. Industrial Internet, using the Internet as a basic infrastructure, can do things that couldn’t be done previously. Machine to machine (M2M) communications, connecting people with machines, and intelligent decision-making using big data analysis all are among available benefits of industrial Internet development, he said.

Keys to industrial Internet

Use of the word “revolution” clearly shows the huge anticipated changes that will result from industrial Internet. Carpenter addressed important related network technologies at two levels.

From a low level, information security is the most important issue. People need secure connectivity of equipment, and very simple transportation of data, from the customer side (where the machines are located) to the cloud [web-based applications]. Secure transportation and communications are very important, since security preserve reliability, protecting against unpredictable threats. Appropriate levels of security should be required for online equipment access.

At a high level, industrial Internet requires better data organization. How can industrial customers search and find trends in data? In Carpenter’s opinion, data must be organized very carefully. Organizing data in the right way is the only way to seize all necessary information from many interconnected industrial platforms. Customers should give greater attention to “big data” opportunities, he suggested, by recording all data from equipment, plants, and even enterprise level systems. This includes data from sensors, and from the design, manufacturing, and related service. All data can be collected with cloud computing technology.

Considering the industrial demands of reliability and safety, Carpenter doesn’t suggest migrating all functionality into cloud-based applications. He said, “Controls still need to be close to equipment. We don’t want the cloud to affect the controls. However, for decision-making, industrial Internet will definitely use the cloud.” Having many customers’ data in the cloud improves decision making for each customer and can help determine if actions are required for other customers as well, he noted.

For any industrial customers unsure about cloud-based security, Carpenter explained that cloud-computing is less about technology and more about enabling people to achieve new goals. To decide where to deploy the cloud is another issue. Different customers or different countries may have their own concerns. GE can provide technical services to meet customers’ data privacy concerns and regulations in different countries, he said. Customers can choose where to deploy the data center as needed. At present, 25% of GE customer data is based in the cloud, and 75% is within customer-based systems, he said, although changes continue. Carpenter confidently predicted that the ratio will reverse over the next 5 years, because cloud-based offerings cost less and are more secure.

Changing now to industrial Internet

People’s behaviors in automation are already changing, influenced by the effect of industrial Internet growth, he said. For example, more mobile devices are being used in industries. Traditionally, many workstation screens have been deployed in a central control room for operators. Today, cross-platform mobile customers can share the same information seen in the operation center.

“It is a different method of interaction with the control system,” Carpenter said. Also, as users collect more data, it is difficult to distinguish which parts are useful to meet specific demands. Therefore, analytics and data sciences have became extremely important to understand the meaning of data. Data scientists will be a new role, separate from traditional control engineers or IT workers. They will have the professional knowledge and information about machine learning. And they can analyze big data to determine the right decisions for decision makers, he said.

- This appeared in Control Engineering China www.cechina.cn and was translated for the Control Engineering North American print and digital edition. Edited by Mark T. Hoske, content manager, CFE Media, Control Engineering and Plant Engineering, mhoske@cfemedia.com.

ONLINE

See related question and answer article from Control Engineering China on the GE Intelligent Platforms “Connected World” road show topic.

More international coverage is available from Control Engineering. www.controleng.com/international

http://www.ge-ip.com/connected-world-event  

GE Intelligent Platforms is a CSIA member as of 3/5/2015



The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
Doubling down on digital manufacturing; Data driving predictive maintenance; Electric motors and generators; Rewarding operational improvement
2017 Lubrication Guide; Software tools; Microgrids and energy strategies; Use robots effectively
Prescriptive maintenance; Hannover Messe 2017 recap; Reduce welding errors
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Research team developing Tesla coil designs; Implementing wireless process sensing
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; Paralleling switchgear generator systems
Natural gas engines; New applications for fuel cells; Large engines become more efficient; Extending boiler life

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me