Edge technology and IIoT use continues to expand, with over one-third of the industrial market adopting these technologies so far, and many more evaluating them. A recent article by editor-at-large Seán Ottewell for Chemical Processing August 2023 titled Chemical Industry Embraces Edge Computing highlighted some opportunities and challenges presented by edge used in industry, and it included my input and thoughts on the subject.
Companies considering edge installations are rightfully concerned about the potential complexity and the required training, configuration, and hardware/software costs, but there are ways to realize the benefits of edge while limiting exposure to these types of issues.
First, start small and gain momentum with quantifiable wins, which will better the chances for success with increasingly larger projects.
Edge use cases can be as simple as data collection for historical analysis, or network gateways bringing together islands of automation. They should not always be viewed through the larger and scarier lens of complex projects like AI or ML.
Second, partner with suppliers possessing extensive industrial automation experience, offering not just products, but also services and training.
And third, don’t be afraid to test out technologies to make sure they are the right fit for your organization, your team, and your application.
The best edge installations should be built on proven products, providing a comprehensive range of visualization, IIoT data connectivity, and analytical software operating on Windows and Linux operating systems and proven to interoperate seamlessly with all types of industrial assets.
The best way to do so is by choosing a comprehensive edge platform of hardware and software, designed to work together securely, so users “can focus most of their effort on creating solutions while avoiding problems associated with overcoming software compatibility issues.”
Emerson software provides a comprehensive range of visualization, IIoT data connectivity, and analytical capabilities, operating on Windows and Linux operating systems, and proven to interoperate seamlessly with all types of industrial assets. Emerson also offers a range of edge controllers and industrial PCs, providing users with more choices when deploying solutions throughout the enterprise, from Floor to Cloud™.
Visit Emerson.com for more information on creating digital transformation success.