Digital transformation is built upon data and the ability to analyze this data to improve workflows and optimize processes. In an AutomationWorld article, Sensor Fusion: The Swiss Army Knife of Digitalization, Emerson’s Manikandan Nambiar joins other suppliers in sharing his thoughts on the increasing capabilities in these sensors.
The article’s author frames this concept of sensor fusion.
With the proper communication protocols and network architecture in place, smart sensor technology and the data it provides can be the bulwark on which digital transformation is built.
Today’s smart sensors, however, are different in a number of ways, says Manikandan Nambiar, vice president of product management for Plantweb and reliability solutions at Emerson Automation Solutions. Most importantly, many contain micro electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) along with onboard microcontrollers, which allow them to collect and process more information in real-time.
Sensor fusion is defined as:
…the ability for a single sensor to monitor multiple input types, leading not only to more granular insights, but cost efficiencies as well. In essence, more data can be attained without needing to invest in multiple devices. Secondly, the capacity to track how inputs are changing over time may allow maintenance personnel and others to move from engaging in a merely reactive approach—that is, responding to a problem when an on-off switch is tripped—to truly understanding the root cause of a failure and moving to prevent it from happening again.
Some of the technologies discussed in the article include HART digital network protocol and IO-Link device-to-device communications. Advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning continue to turn this vast data into actionable information.
Read the article for other suppliers’ views and how this wealth of sensor data is enabling manufacturers and producers to drive their digital transformation / Industry 4.0 initiatives.
Visit the Pervasive Sensing Solutions section on Emerson.com for more on how pervasive sensing applications enabled by wireless sensors and networks enable you to quickly and cost-effectively gain new strategic data and deliver actionable information you can use to quickly improve your operations.