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AT&T announces partnership with Elemental Machines

Elemental Machines wants to bring the internet of things to the world of scientific research. The company’s sensors monitor critical laboratory and production equipment, as well as invisible environmental variables. The goal is to save customers time and money by synthesizing lab equipment performance into actionable intelligence.

The solution uses AT&T’s IoT management platform software and the carrier’s global SIM to monitor assets both on site and remotely. On site Wi-Fi can be used to connect sensors to the network, but if the Wi-Fi connection or power goes down, the cellular network will keep sending data.

Like most IoT solutions, the system AT&T and Elemental Machines have deployed uses sensors, gateways and data analytics software. Battery-powered sensors send data to tablets that are used as gateways. The tablets are running AT&T’s enterprise mobility management software. This helps end users provision, manage and help secure their own laboratory data and apps. The gateway tablets share data with a proprietary Elemental Machines dashboard called Elemental Insights.

Elemental Machines makes two kinds of sensors. One type tracks ambient conditions in the lab environment, such as temperature, humidity, light and air pressure. The other type tracks the usage and performance of equipment like freezers, refrigerators, ovens, incubators, and liquid nitrogen tanks. Customers can receive emails and/or text messages if anything significant changes in the environment, or if any piece of equipment is not operating as expected.

“Our lab operations require a monitoring system that allows our team to track both equipment performance and environmental conditions in near real-time, whether on-site or remotely,” said Dr. Michael Koeris, CEO and founder of Sample6, a food-safety technology company that offers a rapid pathogen-detection system. “The Elemental Machines system gives us easy access to performance characterizations of the lab and equipment, immediate alerts if something is amiss or out of spec, and cellular backup so that we can have access to critical data, even if there is a power interruption.”

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