Test bed designed to bring industrial Internet to factory floor

The Industrial Internet Consortium Test Bed, the "Track and Trace" development, is designed to drive forward tool connectivity to improve industrial manufacturing and bring the industrial Internet onto the factory floor.

By Industrial Internet Consortium February 25, 2015

The Industrial Internet Consortium Test Bed, the "Track and Trace" development, is designed to drive forward tool connectivity to improve industrial manufacturing. The "Track and Trace" project is the ability to precisely determine the position of a cordless nutrunner tool on the shop floor, among other applications. This positioning information, for example, is used to automatically select the correct torque for the respective task, making it possible to tighten safety-relevant screws with exactly the required force. The "Track and Trace" testbed is designed to bring the industrial Internet onto the factory floor.

This collaborative project by the Industrial Internet Consortium is expected to last two years and four Industrial Internet Consortium members will be lending their expertise to the testbed. Bosch is supplying the necessary software; Cisco is taking care of the precision location identification feature; National Instruments will interconnect the power tools; and TechMahindra is responsible for the application programming.

Today’s factories are highly sophisticated and require exacting work—down to the precise amount of force used to tighten a screw. In addition, if a tool recognizes that it is being misused, it will promptly power down to avoid accident or injury. Finally, over the two-year project, the testbed participants will look to fine-tune the localization of tools to 30 centimeters, and ideally down to five centimeters. Currently, the accuracy is approximately one meter—a gap large enough to allow mistakes. This features of Track and Trace will contribute to the safety and quality of the goods produced, as well as increases productivity in manufacturing.

Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC)


– Edited by CFE Media. See more Control Engineering industrial networking stories.