Bigger and better: Reliability of wireless in industrial apps is on the rise

07/02/2008



While advancements in wireless technologies give rise to reliable wireless sensors and sensor networks, a reduction in the cost of mature technologies such as Zigbee and Wi-Fi have led to new applications and larger deployments.

New analysis from New York-based Frost & Sullivan , titled Industrial Wireless Systems for Monitoring & Control , finds the reliability of wireless systems has increased considerably—driving them to new applications.

“Industrial wireless systems decrease installation costs by eliminating the need for wires, while also enabling sensing in remote and harsh industrial environments,” notes Frost & Sullivan Technical Insights Research Analyst Vishnu Sivadevan. “These systems comprise a significant mode of collecting additional data from field devices, machines, and processes, thereby enabling better maintenance and management of machines and processes.”

Industrial wireless systems are used for a broad spectrum of applications such as wireless sensing, wireless condition monitoring and control, as well as real-time location of people and assets in various manufacturing sectors. Wireless sensor networks enable managing production processes, material handling systems, people, and movement of assets.

Wireless systems also play an important role in the cost-effective automation of manufacturing systems. However, no single wireless communication technology exists for the broad spectrum of applications in an industrial setting—namely data collection, location and tracking, voice and video communications, as well as wireless transmission of control signals. A challenge also remains because different applications use different radio wireless technologies. Although a few wireless mesh networking technologies have matured, standardization of an efficient wireless technology for industrial use is still marked by a fluid trend.

“Signal attenuation and range, which contribute to the reliability of wireless devices, are major challenges for wireless system manufacturers,” says Sivadevan. “In the future, several wireless devices are likely to switch to more reliable radio standards such as ultrawideband [UWB], which has more location tracking accuracy and lesser signal attenuation.”

Investment in wireless technologies that can be scaled up and upgraded would be productive in the long term. It would be desirable to choose wireless systems that could integrate with existing information systems.

Access the full report .





No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Intelligent, efficient PLC programming: Cost-saving programming languages are available now; Automation system upgrades; Help from the cloud; Improving flow control; System integration tips
Smarter machines require smarter systems; Fixing PID, part 3; Process safety; Hardware and software integration; Legalities: Integrated lean project delivery
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
PLCs, robots, and the quest for a single controller; how OEE is key to automation solutions.
This article collection contains several articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again