Industry initiatives targeting vibrant ecosystems and tailormade collaborations

ei3 actively works with industry groups to encourage the use of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to meet the growth and sustainability challenges of the 21st century. 

In collaboration with The Organization for Machine Automation and Control (OMAC), we have  helped manufacturers find new and innovative ways to securely and efficiently run production operations. 

We work with the MTConnect Institute on standardizing factory device data and with the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) to enable and accelerate IIoT adoption, which is essential for achieving both sustainable growth and a competitive advantage. 

OUR LIST OF RECENT INDUSTRY INITIATIVES

Addresses cybersecurity challenges related to Remote Access

Industry initiatives

Recent ransomware attacks have put pressure on critical industries to thoroughly review their policies around access for remote support. Protecting automation endpoints from attacks that come from remote connectivity is vital for Information Technology (IT), Operational Technology (OT), and security professionals.

To help manufacturers overcome this threat, ei3 leads an OMAC workgroup focused on different methods for connecting remotely and how they can be configured to provide protection from cyberattacks. These methods include:

  • Direct VPN Connection
  • Converged Networks
  • Black Box Connections 
  • Cellular Connections
  • Externally Managed Connections

To get more information and join the workgroup, contact mark.fondl[at]ei3.com

Developed the Remote Access Guide on secure connectivity

Industry initiatives

In September 2020, ei3 initiated an OMAC workgroup with 37 industry leaders from across the globe to define best practices for secure Remote Access to plant equipment. The workgroup’s first deliverable, the OMAC Remote Access Guide, provides a thorough understanding of:

  • The evolution and ever-growing role of remote access on shop floors.
  • The effectiveness of technologies and techniques currently being used for Remote Access.
  • How to overcome organizational IT/OT barriers.
  • Industrial automation network architecture
  • The legal liability aspects of Remote Access
  • Ways to reduce the risk posed by cybersecurity threats

Published research on using visionary algorithms to generate actionable intelligence

Industry initiatives

In this technical paper, published and presented at the IEEE World Forum on the Internet of Things in April 2019, ei3 presents the benefits of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to understand the well-being of industrial machines, production lines, and plants. Drawing on vast amounts of machine data over extended periods, new algorithms based on machine learning can interpret the data and alert operators about impending issues that affect machine performance.

The paper also addresses various problems with using AI algorithms developed in a laboratory on the shop floor. The noise and other perturbations contained in process data can interfere with the calculations being carried out by the algorithms, resulting in missed events and false predictions. Clean data, namely data with little or no noise and discontinuities, is required to detect patterns reliably. At ei3, we recognized this problem early on and developed adaptive cleaning algorithms to first remove these perturbations from the data before applying pattern detection. The result is AI in action, helping manufacturers boost productivity and avoid costly downtimes and repairs.

Groundbreaking presentation in 2012 on low-carbon approaches for the packaging industry

Industry initiatives

In September 2012, Spencer Cramer delivered a groundbreaking presentation to the Sustainable Packaging Coalition outlining how organizations can create more sustainable packaging by adopting IIoT. He explained how the industrial internet can enable manufacturers to:

  • Discover new ways to reduce energy consumption while maintaining output, thereby realizing significant cost savings and increasing sustainability.
  • Collect accurate quantitative sustainability and carbon footprint data to validate their commitment to continual improvement.
  • Strengthen competitiveness through voluntary compliance with the ISO 50001 standard for energy management or other well-known standards, including ISO 9001 or ISO 14001.

Helped craft Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) Implementation Guide to effective performance measurement

OEE is one of the most important performance measurements in manufacturing. While there are many ways to measure and track OEE, manufacturers can gather accurate and useful information only when it is done correctly.

Craig Rowles from ei3 worked on the implementation guide and helped to ensure that best practices were being applied.

Outlined an alternative approach to cultivating a “Green Patch” in Your Brownfield

Spencer Cramer from ei3 and the late John Kowal from B&R collaborated with the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) to define an approach to get the benefits of digitization and IIoT to existing “brownfield” sites.

When it comes to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), there is intense interest in getting more productivity out of existing assets – what is referred to as the brownfield. One problem is that management expectations for payback can be extremely unrealistic for equipment ranging from 10 to 30+ years old. 

This whitepaper emphasizes the importance of a green patch environment in unlocking opportunities for integrated machine learning, predictive insights, and applying analytics to show the impact of IoT optimization to drive revenue, cut costs and innovate your operations.