At Link Labs, we help customers build long-range, M2M wireless networks. We typically get approached by startups with IoT app ideas, or big companies who are trying to solve a sensing, control, or data challenge. So we talk to a lot of cool people in the Internet of Things world, and we like to keep up with the applications that are already solving challenges.

So today, we’re going to highlight some of our favorite and most useful industrial IoT (IIoT) applications. These new industrial sensing applications may just be inspiring enough to get your own gears turning.

1. Smart Structures’ Embedded Data Collector

An Embedded Data Collector (EDC) is what’s at the heart of Smart Structures’ SmartPile security and structural integrity measurement system. The wireless design allows the sensor to be embedded into concrete during the pouring and curing process where it becomes a permanent part of the structure. The EDC communicates wirelessly to the Smart Structures Work Station where data is collected, aggregated, and processed on site. This information reveals the quality of concrete during curing, transport, and installation.

2. Cisco’s 819 Integrated Services Router

The Cisco 819 Integrated Services Router (ISR) supports machine-to-machine (M2M) applications that can enable enterprises to use 3G wireless WAN network services to go beyond traditional branch locations. You can extend corporate networks to the micro branch for applications like ATMs, kiosks, digital signage, or remote branches. The 819 supports 3G, 4G, and 3G with dual radio 802.11n, combined with full features of Cisco IOS Software. It supports M2M applications and services, extensive indoor and outdoor antenna support, and Cisco’s advanced IP services.

3. The Libelium Waspmote Sensor Nodes

Libelium has released new industrial protocol modules and API libraries for Waspmote sensor nodes that allow data from industrial devices to connect to the Cloud. The new modules support industrial communication network protocols such as RS-232, RS-485, CAN Bus, and Modbus. These are used for industrial automation, building automation, military and automobile applications, for sensor network capability in remote or factory floor environments.

4. Michelin’s EFFIFUEL Service

Michelin built an ecosystem of experts to deliver its new EFFIFUEL service, which uses high tech and high touch to reduce fuel costs in truck fleets. Sensors inside vehicles collect data on fuel consumption, tire pressure, temperature, speed, and location. This data is then transmitted to a cloud service of a Michelin solutions partner, and that’s where the human touch begins.

5. GE’s Latest Locomotive

GE’s latest locomotive has 250 sensors that measure 150,000 data points per minute. The end user—whether it is a machine enmeshed in a process or an individual—can use these analytics to interpret the massive streams of incoming data from the locomotive’s sensors, along with information and operational systems, to drive real-time decision making and to anticipate events.

6. Caterpillar’s Newest Equipment

Caterpillar has started using industrial analytics to help its dealers succeed. The company harnesses and analyzes data from its machines, engines, and services, and transmits the resulting insights to dealers, enabling them to anticipate problems, proactively schedule maintenance, and help customers manage their fleets more efficiently.

So, are the gears turning yet?

The industrial IoT and M2M possibilities are endless. We’re working with clients on some industrial sensing projects that you’ll see out in the world in 2015 (we’ll update you on those projects when the time comes). In the meantime, think about how your company could benefit from data like this. Let’s talk about your ideas.

Think we’re missing one? Tweet at us with an industrial sensing or any other cool IoT applications you've seen.


Written by Brian Ray

Brian is the Founder and CTO of Link Labs. As the chief technical innovator and leader of the company, Brian has led the creation and deployment of a new type of ultra long-range, low-power wireless networking which is transforming the Internet of Things and M2M space.

Before starting Link Labs, Brian led a team at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab that solved communications and geolocation problems for the national intelligence community. He was also the VP of Engineering at the network security company, Lookingglass, and served for eight years as a submarine officer in the U.S. Navy. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and received his Master’s Degree from Oxford University.

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