XDK Industrial Automation
Joining the Internet of Things with XDK from Bosch
Introduction and Challenge
These days, the Internet of Things (IoT) is a key topic. Previously, industry was all about going large, focusing on mass production, standardization, and automation. The goal was to enable ever larger production runs with the least amount of resources overall. Today, the Internet of Things looks to the small scale. While keeping the efficiency from earlier methods, businesses need to be able to respond quickly to changing market conditions. Adjustments have to be fast and simple, and equipment has to be networked for efficient coordination. Operators require information about production processes in real time and devices themselves need to play a bigger role in detecting and reacting to sensor data automatically.
One way to move to an IoT setup without buying an entire new factory is to add smart devices to existing equipment. The computing power in small embedded devices has grown significantly in recent years – just look at any smartphone. Add to this a package of sensors, so the equipment can react to real-time conditions, and, of course, Internet connectivity for communication.
The is perfectly suited for this type of industrial automation. The XDK provides a wide range of sensors for measuring data, as well as expansion ports if the built-in hardware is not sufficient. The XDK also contains both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi hardware for reporting data. And most importantly, it comes with a great software suite, documentation, and the full support of a large developer community. Thanks to all these features, engineers can integrate it into their production processes very easily and quickly.
Jason Athanasoglu and his team developed a pilot project based on liqueur production. XDKs are hooked up to several simulated mixing silos. The result is a completely automated system that also gives operators full control at all times. The project’s hardware comprises a lightweight server running on a laptop, which is connected to the silos with XDKs. Each XDK works as a machine-to-machine client: it collects data, passes it to the server, and receives commands in return. The silo simulators use embedded hardware to simulate temperature and liquid levels, mixing equipment, and everything else.
On the software side, the XDK is programmed with an IoT wrapper based on XDK sample code. It connects to the server and presents a number of functions over a standard REST interface. At any time, the operator can look at the status of production, change parameters, or even hit an emergency stop button to cease all work immediately.
The Role of Bosch Connected Devices and Solutions
As an innovative company, can draw on extensive experience in sensors and software solutions. Partners, including Bosch Sensortec and Akustica, show our added value by combining innovative proposals with low barriers to market entry.
The XDK from BCDS offers an all-in-one scalable hardware platform with ready-to-use software. There is no need for component selection, hardware selection, hardware assembly, or deployment of a real-time operating system. Drivers for all system components are included.
In addition, BCDS offers the XDK Workbench. This development platform can be downloaded free of charge. Sample applications and a user community are included with the package. The included sample software was used in the current project to interface the XDK to the silo hardware.
With only a few XDKs, a company can deploy a network of smart industrial hardware at minimal cost.
Solutions and Benefits
Older industrial systems are great for, say, producing a single make of automobile every year. However, adjustment of these systems is expensive in terms of time and resources. Teams of engineers need to replace embedded firmware, make time-consuming measurements, and shut down all production to change a single parameter.
The XDK industrial automation system creates a smart Internet of Things production line in just a few simple steps. The required hardware investment is only a few XDK units and some sensors. Software development is streamlined through sample modules Bosch provides free of charge.
This pilot project automates production with existing equipment and off-the-shelf Bosch hardware. It shows the potential of the XDK as the cornerstone of creating a smart Internet of Things-based production line.
The XDK industrial automation project is scalable and available for use immediately. It provides companies with a quick and costefficient way to join the IoT revolution and stay ahead of the competition.
We at BCDS, with our experience in IoT, are the right partner for sensor-based IoT projects. We increase user-friendliness, security, and productivity by enabling new business models for global markets, improving everyday life.