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Monday, April 24, 2017

Bots move into industrial IoT

By Nick Flaherty

German IoT software developer OSIsoft is extending its partnership with Rockwell Automation to integrate its PI System technology into a new bot-based appliance for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

Rockwell's FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices automatically discovers devices on industrial networks to conduct diagnostics and monitor their health, providing early warnings, diagnoses problems and gives insight to take action. All of this to improve uptime of processes and machines using the PI System software. Users of the system can receive “action cards” through their smartphones, tablets or a web browser or engage with the device through “Shelby,” a natural language voice-activated (bot) system.

The PI System technology embedded in FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices captures and organizes the vast amount of data generated by these networks so it can serve customers immediately from the appliance, or later have the data delivered to Microsoft Azure via FactoryTalk Cloud for further Big Data analytics. Worldwide, the PI System manages over 1.5 billion sensor-based data streams, making it one of the most widely uses IIoT technologies.

“Industrial customers need deep, detailed insight into their operations in real-time to stay competitive: that is what drives our FactoryTalk strategy,” said John Genovesi, Vice President of Information Software and Process Business at Rockwell Automation. 

The PI System captures data from sensors, manufacturing equipment and other devices and transforms it into rich, real-time insights that engineers, executives and partners can use to reduce costs, dramatically improve overall productivity, and create new connected services and smart devices.

OSIsoft and Rockwell Automation have collaborated for over a decade on the technology.PI System powers the FactoryTalk Historian embedded in many Rockwell Automation systems. BHP Billiton, for instance, manages millions of data tags across mines, transportation assets and production facilities to reduce variability and increase quality. PI System technology ships in approximately 1,800 Rockwell Automation Systems per year and by 2020, OSIsoft anticipates that hundreds of thousands of devices from various vendors with PI System technologies will be shipping.

“Right now fewer than 14 percent of companies have completely connected their production data to the rest of their enterprise,” said Martin Otterson, Senior Vice President of Customer Success at OSIsoft. “Our relationship with Rockwell Automation will fuel the development of products and solutions that will let more people take advantage of machine and operational data for more projects in more ways than ever before.”

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