Making Manufacturing Smarter: Connected Industrial Applications

Smart Industries leverage the Internet of Things (IoT) and invest in technology to optimize resources and increase productivity. IIoT is bringing a fundamental change in the way factories and workplaces operate while making them more efficient, safer and environmentally friendly. By implementing connected solutions comprised of low-cost sensors and Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs), manufacturers can accelerate their digital transformation.

Smart Industry Applications Today

Industrial operations can benefit from the deployment of IoT-connected long range, low power sensors for various always-on monitoring functions. LoRaWAN®-based smart industry solutions relay critical data in real-time, enabling actionable insights to improve performance.

  • Efficient equipment – Real-time monitoring of equipment health combined with predictive analytics identify issues that need to be fixed before there is a failure.
  • Remote management – Remotely track sensor data, provision new devices, execute commands and create smart rules for autonomous behavior.
  • Unified connectivity – Seamlessly integrate end-to-end IoT applications on a single, secure network for industrial systems automation, maintenance and monitoring.
  • Reduce carbon footprint – New tools for energy-efficient facilities, air quality monitoring and equipment management reduce ecological impact.

Industrial IoT Use Cases

Manufacturers implementing IoT solutions and applications, managing connected devices, enhancing equipment with remote monitoring and improving maintenance capabilities are creating new transformative processes to improve operations. Senet’s LoRaWAN connectivity enables disparate parts of production to communicate with each other in real-time and makes the entire manufacturing process safer, more efficient, and easier to monitor and control.

Securely tracking the location and condition of valuable assets and inventory is critical to manufacturing operations. Managing assets and reducing lifecycle costs becomes much easier with IoT-enabled solutions. Integrating data from intelligent technologies improves decision making for planning and operations.

Asset management tools help manufacturers streamline their processes and maximize efficiencies in managing and maintaining all asset types – from factory production equipment to fleets delivering goods and everything in between.

Backflow preventer devices are installed on water pipes to allow water to flow in one direction but never in the opposite direction, preventing water sources from becoming contaminated. Monitoring and proper maintenance of backflow valves is critical for the health and safety of workers and manufacturing systems.

All industrial water customers are required to have backflow protection devices at water service entrances. Undetected relief valve discharges cause contamination and flooding. Connected backflow preventers include a wireless monitor that senses when a backflow condition exists and sends an immediate text or email alert to facility managers. Monitoring solutions ensure safety, reduce liability and offer peace of mind.

Frequent exposure to poor indoor air quality can lead to eye, nose and throat irritations and a number of other immediate symptoms. Over time this exposure could lead to even more serious health conditions. Research indicates that indoor air pollutants may be two to five times higher than outdoor levels.

Air quality monitoring solutions automatically track air flow and test levels of carbon monoxide and other pollutants to certify compliance regulations and ensure proper and safe working conditions.

Leaks in pipelines and other systems that involve water, gas or chemicals present a serious issue with the potential for significant economic losses or substantial environmental pollution.

Water leak detection and flooding sensors monitor for the presence of water inside and outside industrial facilities. If a malfunction occurs or an anomaly is detected, the system pinpoints and sends alerts with actionable information to facility managers to guide quick response and resolution.

Steam is used in a wide range of industries. Common applications include steam heated processes in factories and steam driven turbines in electric power plants. Steam traps are a type of automatic valve that filters out condensed steam and non-condensable gases such as air without letting steam escape. Steam traps fail at an average rate of 10 – 30% each year, creating waste and costly inefficiencies. Testing steam traps is a labor-intensive process typically done manually once per year.

Ultrasonic steam trap monitoring systems allow manufacturers to interrogate their steam trap population every minute in real-time to detect failures using spectral analysis. Data is securely sent to an online facility management system providing dashboard visibility and reports as to which traps are functioning normally and the ability to automatically schedule service orders for those in need of repair.

With the large number of propane and fuel oil tanks being used to heat and power factories, a reliable system to monitor fuel levels is essential. Fuel delivery companies are a critical partner in Smart Industry supply chain operations where run-outs can have detrimental effects. Without the means to remotely measure fuel levels, trucks are often being dispatched inefficiently – driving up operational costs and complicating customer service delivery.

By placing low-cost, low-power sensors on fuel tanks, fill level and other valuable data can be sent over the Senet network to tank monitoring solutions used by supply companies to optimize their delivery process. In addition, industrial operations can accurately forecast fuel usage to reduce truck rolls thereby reducing their carbon footprint.

Temperature monitoring is a key element of industrial production processes. Alloy melting quality in the automotive industry, foil thermoforming in the plastic industry, or glass syringe production in the life science industry requires temperature measurement across the entire production line. An undetected anomaly in such production processes could cost millions of dollars.

Industrial temperature monitoring systems are useful for many types of industrial equipment such as furnaces, refrigerators, freezers, motors, warehouses and more. Manufacturers receive critical data in real-time to control the quality of their production process, prove quality assurance and protect assets.