Many manufacturers are eager to tap the power of big data in order to increase competitiveness, improve the bottom line, and anticipate trends. They are exploring the Internet of Things (IoT), which facilitates communications between all types of field devices and enables manufacturers to act upon decisions derived from data analytics. However, a major challenge is gaining access to field data, made more difficult by field devices that use different fieldbus protocols, run independently, or lack connectivity.
Helping to overcome communication barriers amongst various field devices, including machinery, robots, PLCs, and sensors, the NEXCOM* NIFE* 100 IoT Controller provides cross-protocol communication capabilities, among many other benefits. The NIFE 100, a PC-based controller running the Intel® IoT Gateway stack, is an open-architecture solution design for connecting fieldbus modules to the cloud. This paper discusses this controller, as well as other NEXCOM offerings that can be used to build IoT solutions that improve operations, strengthen security barriers, simplify device management, and reduce maintenance costs.