ROI by Applying the Industrial Internet of Things - Emerson Automation Experts

ROI by Applying the Industrial Internet of Things

IIoT-Industry-40The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) or Industrie 4.0 depending on where you live remains a lively topic of discussion in our industry. A Control Engineering magazine series of articles, Industrial Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 brought together six articles from experts across the process and industrial automation industries.

Emerson's Bob Karschnia

One of those experts, Emerson’s Bob Karschnia shared his ideas in an article, IIoT benefits, examples, rapid returns on investments.

In this article, Bob opens with an example of a significant return on investment with IIoT technologies. These were:

…applied for monitoring valves in a refinery, used wireless acoustic transmitters to improve regulatory compliance and reduce hydrocarbon losses by $3 million per year from timely detection and repair of faulty valves…

He notes the longer history of sensors, the “things” in IoT in industrial applications as opposed to commercial applications:

Hundreds of millions of connected wired and wireless pressure, level, flow, temperature, vibration, acoustic, position, analytical, and other sensors operate in industry, and millions more are added annually, for more monitoring, analysis, and optimization value.

The data coming from the sensors connect with software to help with interpretation. The role of the Internet:

…usually makes offsite connections, often with cloud-based storage. Higher-level software does control and monitoring, asset management, and specialized data analysis. At remote data-analysis centers, experts perform big data analytics showing patterns, problems and solutions.

Bob lists four IIoT benefits:

  1. Collecting data from sensors (things) much more cost effectively than ever because sensors are often battery-powered and wireless
  2. Interpreting this data strategically using big data analytics and other techniques to turn the data into actionable information
  3. Presenting this actionable information to the right person, either plant personnel or remote experts, and at the right time
  4. Delivering performance improvements when personnel take corrective action.

Ergon Refining implemented this IIoT technology at their Vicksburg, Mississippi plant and achieved the results highlighted above. The project:

…paid for itself in five months; estimated annualized return on investment (ROI) was 271% annualized over 20 years.

Read the article to see some of the steps they took in achieving these results. In addition, you’ll find other applications for IIoT in the Industrial IOT section of the Top Quartile Performance executive portal.

You can connect and interact with other IIoT experts in the Wireless group in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.

Posted Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 under Industrial IoT.


  1. Digital transformation of work practices start with digital sensors. This is key to data-driven maintenance, loss control, improved HS&E, and productivity. Plants can get started on Pervasive Sensing solutions by conducting a plant modernization audit to identify missing measurements. Learn more from this essay:

  2. But also… IoT (arrogant-tech-jargon-word) is also a huge threat to your systems biz, homey:

    Instead of buying a super-expensive DeltaV system with a bunch of conventional I/O capability (which was dated technology, even a decade ago), I can buy a $25 Raspberry Pi like board, load it with licensed software platform like CODESYS or a KW Software offering, and have a fully functional controller that meets IEC 61131 standards, communicating with all my devices over Profinet.

    This is great for modern applications, like solar and whatnot. It’d be cool if you guys licences a similar software package. I’m fond of Ovation’s very much unappreciated/easy/highly-effective SAMA programming interface. Just sayin’.

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