In today’s world, the infrastructure provided by smart city and industrial automation systems enables continuous connectivity. The commonality shared by such systems is their association with the Internet of Things (IoT). With the inclusion of sensors and control devices, entire infrastructures can be integrated with information and communication technologies, resulting in networked and embedded devices that enable intelligent monitoring and management. With the easy deployment and flexibility of sensor devices, wireless sensor networks (WSN) can comprise numerous sensor nodes that collect information. The collected information then provides a database for further analysis; the results of which can be used to improve the reliability and efficiency of existing infrastructure systems. Considering the rapid development of sensor technology, WSNs are expected to become a key IoT technology.
Wireless I/O Connectivity Modules and Gateway Solution
For engineers, the greatest challenge of designing for the IoT is ensuring wireless connectivity. The concept of the IoT involves not only new devices designed with IoT compatibility, but also existing systems that operate outside the IoT cloud. However, to establish a ubiquitous cloud of interconnected devices, non IP-based devices must be able to connect to each other without requiring Ethernet or a Wi-Fi interface and accompanying protocol stack. This can be achieved using wireless I/O interface modules and gateways that enable Internet access in the context of real-world applications. Furthermore, adding intelligent sensor control software to gateways can simplify the design of IoT systems by providing access to shared processing resources.
This paper addresses the implementation of IP connectivity, security, disparate node aggregation, devicemanagement, as well as a software development kit (SDK) that enables customization.
Considering the demands of potential applications, Advantech’s WISE-3000 gateways and WISE-1000 wireless I/O modules can satisfy most customer requirements. Using a WISE-100 wireless I/O module and WISE-3000 gateway, system integrators can easily connect existing control devices and sensors to IoT systems for data collection and device control based on the results of subsequent data analysis. When combined with a WISE-1000 wireless I/O module, Advantech’s WISE-3000 gateway can support mesh network topologies, which increases the reliability of network connections despite interference in harsh environments.
WISE-PaaS – Accelerating the Development of IoT Solutions
Currently, IoT services are largely provided by device manufacturers. However, businesses need to engage with various devices and applications. Because of the complexity of such applications, a strong IoT platform capable of supporting numerous functions is essential for the delivery of IoT services. IoT platforms should facilitate device integration and remote management. For asset and vehicle tracking, remote management enables managers to ensure device security and stakeholder access. IoT platforms must also support the monitoring and reporting of device connectivity and system health, facilitate device configuration and firmware upgrades, and accommodate various software applications. Advantech’s WISE-PaaS provides the ideal solution that can support the diverse requirements of various industries.
WISE-PaaS is an integrated IoT service and cloud platform that supports data collection via smart devices and sensors, enables remote devicemanagement, and provides industrial-grade security for data transmissions and systems. Featuring more than 150 RESTful APIs, including those for sensor device management, security management, industrial automation, interactive multimedia, intelligent video, and network management, WISE-PaaS can provide standard web services. WISE-PaaS is compatible with various cloud platforms and integrated with Node-RED, which provides a business logic editor and dashboard builder, to facilitate web UI virtualization design.
M2.COM – Innovative Wireless IoT Sensor Platform
No single wireless standard can adequately support all applications, use scenarios, environments, and requirements. Considering the many wireless standards deployed in the market, spread over multiple frequency bands, and usingdifferent communication protocols, selecting the most appropriate wireless connectivity technology for specific IoT applications can be a challenge. To minimize product design efforts and time to market, IoT sensor platforms must be standardized to enable the development of a wide range of products and services. In response to this need, Advantech developed M2.COM as an open standard sensor platform. With M2.COM, Advantech leveraged a PCI Express M.2 connector and form factor, and rearranged the pin assignments for sensor node applications.
Advantech’s M2.COM modules offer flexible device connectivity options, security, and multipoint control units (MCUs) with accessible IOs that facilitate integration with the sensors, actuators, and microcontrollers in the products. The compact size of M2.COM modules enables installation anywhere inside a product. This allows sensor node and actuator makers to focus on the design of sensor carry boards and development of sensor algorithms. The provision of a fully integrated wireless MCU solution in the M2.COM module facilitates the development of IoT devices. Instead of using discrete components, designers can now employ integrated devices that combine MCUs and RF transceivers. The M2.COM module integrates these two technologies, thereby eliminating concerns regarding the interconnection of RF transceivers and MCUs to ultimately simplify and streamline board design.
M2.COM Alliance- IoT Ecosystem Partnership
Additional challenges for IoT device design include facilitating collaboration between numerous stakeholders and ensuring communication and service compatibility across mass deployments of devices produced by different manufacturers.
In such acomplex ecosystem, end-to-end IoT applications require varying technologies, engineering, and entities. Additionally, collaborative players are important for cooperating with various entities and organizations. M2.COM Alliance is working to deliver an open platform specification and implementation reference that ensures device interoperability regardless of sensor technology and RF connectivity. The M2.COM Alliance brings IoT platform providers, communication service providers, system integrators, and technology suppliers together with a common platform. This open standard platform is especially useful for complex system environments, such as those in the IoT industry. The M2.COM Alliance is expected to accelerate the development of IoT applications for industry.
The computing industry haschanged drastically over the last few decades, particularly in recent years. The next major advancement in computing will be the IoT. With this transition to a hyper-connected IoT world, Advantech has invested considerable resources into designing IoT solutions, such as devices, gateways, and cloud platforms that facilitate the sharing of information through a unified framework, and developing a common system platform that supports innovative IoT applications.
Advantech also emphasizes the development of an IoT ecosystem, which has the potential to build the millions of connected devices that enhance the convenience and quality of everyday life.