Industrial IoT product round-up, featuring u-blox, Analog Devices, Altair, Eurotech
In a flurry of activity, the makers of modules, chips and embedded systems have announced a number of product and service initiatives to extend, simplify and secure industrial IoT systems; u-blox, Analog Devices, Altair Semiconductor, and Eurotech appear.
IoT maker u-blox unveils multi-band NB-IoT module, upgradeable to 5G
Swiss IoT maker u-blox has released a multi-band NB-IoT module, called SARA-N3, which is globally configurable for any NB-IoT network, and targeted at IoT applications such as metering, smart city systems, smart homes, and industrial trackers.
The SARA-N3 module, supporting a preliminary set of 3GPP Release 14 (LTE Cat NB2) features, can be provisioned over-the-air via the ‘lightweight M2M’ (LwM2M) protocol, and will be upgradeable to 5G also, said u-blox.
Samuele Falcomer, a senior product manager at u-blox, commented: “For customers currently using other methods to send IoT/IIoT data, such as legacy cellular technology, it is simple to upgrade to SARA-N3 through u-blox nested design and the new features introduced. The product is future-proof, as it can receive further firmware upgrades over the air.”
The SARA-N3 supports TCP, HTTPS, CoAP, DTLS and MQTT. Its maker claims the unit is optimised to operate on a single cell primary battery for over 10 years. It also features a ‘last gasp’ function to send a last message should power fail unexpectedly.
It is available in two variants: the multi-band option, and a China-specific model.
Analog Devices intros solutions for deterministic networking, predictive maintenance
Analog Devices has announced a range of industrial IoT solutions for the manufacturing and broad industrial sectors, including deterministic Ethernet, security, and condition-based monitoring.
Among them, it has introduced a number of hardware-based identity solutions that enable security at the edge of the network, within a factory control loop, and integrate time-sensitive networking (TSN) features to enable control via OPC-UA.
The Massachusetts company has also unveiled an triaxial vibration sensing module (‘ADcmXL3021’) for condition-based monitoring, which makes use of the company’s micromechanical (MEMs) sensor technology and signal processing functions, to monitor for fatigue and failures in industrial equipment and transport vehicles.
Meanwhile, German company Symeo, acquired by Analog Devices in March, has introduced a next-generation family of radar positioning systems, the LPR-1DHP-200 range, for 1D distance measurements with an accuracy in the millimetre range for advanced automation, transport, and production processes.
Brendan O’Dowd, general manager for industrial automation at Analog Devices, said: “We’re focused on solution areas that represent immediate opportunity for customers to put existing infrastructure on a path to Industry 4.0.”
Altair teams up with Japanese firm JIG-SAW to provide chip-based comms and controls
Israeli IoT chipset manufacturer Altair Semiconductor has struck a deal with Japanese company JIG-SAW to develop LTE-enabled sensors for a range of industrial use cases, including warehouse site management and equipment monitoring.
The pair will combine Altair’s Cat-M/NB-IoT ALT1250 chip with JIG-SAW’s software control technology to enable individual control of industrial IoT devices via a modem chip connection, rather than via standard short-range technologies.
Developers will be able to create new IoT applications based on this control mechanism, they said; they reckon on sensors for site management, equipment monitoring, and logistics.
Ilan Reingold, vice president of business development at Altair, said: “Because Wi-Fi is not always feasible or efficient for many industrial IoT applications, cellular is a strategic alternative for reliable, secure and low-cost connectivity to the cloud.”
Hiroto Ozaki, chief operating officer at JIG-SAW, said: “The market is expanding rapidly, and enabling control not only via the cloud, but also within the modem chip layer. [This] offers significant value for IoT users by providing high monitoring quality and stabilised, consistent services.”
Eurotech upgrades industrial IoT connectivity tool for multi-vendor cloud set-ups
Italian firm Eurotech has released a new version of its Everyware Software Framework (ESF), providing connectivity to a number of third-party cloud platforms, including Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS, and Cumulocity IoT, as well as its own Everyware Cloud system.
The new 6.0 release enables multiple devices to connect to multiple cloud platforms, enabling better portability of applications.
It also integrates Red Hat’s JBoss A-MQ and JBoss Fuse components to support a wider range of real-time messaging and connectivity options for linking field assets with edge and cloud functions.
Eurotech makes gateways, servers, control systems and boards for the industrial market, as well as embedded computing systems and software. ESF 6 ESF is the enterprise edition of Eclipse Kura, the open source edge framework for IoT gateways to which Eurotech is the original contributor.