Edge Computing: Feeds the future of manufacturing

The existing local and centralized cloud infrastructure cannot support the broad computing needs of these powerful applications, which require low latency – or delayed data transfer – to seamlessly transport and gain real-time access to data. data. To reduce the use of latency and bandwidth, as well as to increase costs, computing power and processes need to be closer to the physical location of the data. The solution? Move computing power to local infrastructure to the “edge” of the network, rather than relying on remote data centers.

One shot 90% of industrial enterprises will use cutting-edge computer technology until 2022, according to Frost & Sullivan, while a recent IDC report (registration required) found that 40% of all organizations will invest in cutting-edge computing over the next year. “Edge computing is needed to drive the next-generation industrial revolution,” says Bike Xie, vice president of engineering for technology vendor AI Kneron. The future of AI and other automation technologies depends on the decentralized board, he explains, either connecting the Internet of Things and other devices to distributed network nodes or implementing AI-enabled chips that can build algorithmic models. in autonomy.

“Edge computing is complementary to the cloud,” Xie says. “Like the cloud, cutting-edge technology allows application manufacturers to gain and apply knowledge based on data that power smart factories and products.”

Manufacturing moves to the edge

The move toward cutting-edge computing is the result of a marine shift in manufacturing over the past two decades. Manufacturers, whether they produce industrial products, electronic equipment, or consumer goods, are slowly but steadily moving to increased automation and self-monitoring of systems and processes to drive greater efficiency in product production, the equipment maintenance and optimization of each link in the supply chain.

As manufacturers implement more sensor-based devices, driven by automation, they produce even more data than ever before. But often, data sets from sensor-based devices to centralized systems can grow rapidly unnecessarily, slowing down automation and rendering real-time applications inoperable.

Edge computing allows manufacturers to make flexible choices about how data is processed to eliminate time delays and decrease bandwidth usage, as well as what data can be destroyed immediately after it is used. treated, says Xie. “Producers can process data quickly to the edge if transmitting data to the cloud is a bottleneck, or move some data to the cloud if latency and bandwidth aren’t an issue.” Not only does it improve the processing of data closer to where they are used saving bandwidth and reducing costs, but the data is more secure because it is processed quickly.

IDC predicts that by 2023 more than 50% of the new enterprise IT infrastructure deployed will be on board rather than in corporate data centers, down from less than 10% by 2020.

An example of switching from cloud to onboard comes from Paul Savill, senior vice president for product and service management at Lumen, a technology company that offers a cutting-edge computing platform. Lumen recently made an installation in a newly built factory, worth millions of square meters. Robotic systems from about 50 different manufacturers rely on state-of-the-art computing “because they needed to be at 5 milliseconds of latency to accurately control robotics,” says Savill. The deployment provides a secure connection from cutting-edge applications to robotics manufacturers ’data centers,“ where they collect information in real time ”.

But for long-term data storage and for machine learning and analytics applications – all that goes into the public cloud, says Savill. Others, larger workloads are processed in large data centers “with vast computational power” that can quickly process huge sums of data.

“This chain from the public cloud to the on-site computing cloud is very important,” says Savill. “It gives customers the ability to leverage the latest advanced technology in a way that saves them money and leads to tremendous efficiency.”

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