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Secure data transmission is a key issue for the Smart Factory. That’s why AXOOM, the platform provider specializing in the world of industrial production, is now using an entirely new communications module: the AXOOM Factory Gate. It is currently the most secure means of transmitting data from production. The module is capable of collecting and encrypting the sensor and machine data of all connected devices – regardless of their manufacturer – and sending them on to the AXOOM platform for visualization and analysis.
Mobile access to the platform and to individual machine data is possible at any time. However, the mobile devices do not communicate with the data providing components directly, but always via the AXOOM Factory Gate. It is based on a multi-level security and encryption concept, enabling secure data transmission at the component level (component-specific IDs), transport level (TLS / HTTPS), application level (encryption of messages) and user level (username/password). Accurate access control within the factory and out of the factory is thereby guaranteed, and unsafe incoming connections are ruled out.
With the AXOOM Factory Gate, any OEM devices can be quickly and easily integrated into the AXOOM Cloud and connected to further systems. Since all the components installed in production follow this communication path, they can be jointly controlled allowing for services such as condition monitoring, customer service, remote diagnostics or preventive maintenance. “The AXOOM Factory Gate opens up entirely new business models within the ‘Internet of Things’, because now an incredibly large number of different devices can be connected without a problem via central coordination points,” says Florian Weigmann, Managing Director of AXOOM GmbH.
One model is being realized by AXOOM partner Rittal, a systems supplier for enclosure technology, for the Hanover Fair 2016. Digitalization of production also includes smart cooling units for switching cabinets. Connected cooling units reduce companies’ monitoring requirements, making it possible to detect faults earlier and so avoid costly machine downtime. Together with AXOOM, Rittal has developed an app for the connection and remote monitoring of its new Blue e+ cooling units. The application can be seen at the Hanover Fair as part of a showcase – at the Rittal booth (Hall 11, Booth E06) as well as at the AXOOM booth (Hall 08, Booth D09). Rittal will be combining its cooling units via the AXOOM Factory Gate in the future, so that data such as temperature or current status can be transferred to the AXOOM Cloud using standard protocols such as OPC-UA or SNMP.
AXOOM’s contribution to this solution includes its expertise with merging, analyzing and processing data from industrial production. In this case, the cooling units send information via the communication module to an AXOOM-operated Private or Public Cloud – depending on customers’ requirements. From there, they are made available to the company in the form of a browser-based app. A graphical user interface with several “RPM counter” icons gives the responsible company employees a comfortable overview of several cooling units at once.
“With our showcase, we’re demonstrating how the monitoring of enclosure cooling can be made far more efficient than it has been so far,” says Steffen Wagner, Head of Product Management Cooling at Rittal. “The solution is already fully functional and can be implemented by customers according to their individual requirements.” Rittal and AXOOM are already working on their next ideas.
AXOOM GmbH, headquartered in the technology region of Karlsruhe, was founded in 2015 as a subsidiary of the TRUMPF Group. The company employs around 100 people who see themselves as passionate shapers of the Industrial Internet of Things. With the AXOOM platform, they are developing an open operating system for the industry, which pools data from machines and provides apps for the optimal operation of these machines and the entire value chain. For the benefit of the AXOOM ecosystem: Thanks to AXOOM technology, machine builders can offer smart machines and develop digital business models. Manufacturing companies are experiencing new dimensions of transparency and productivity. App and distribution partners benefit from the marketplace potential of the platform. The experts at AXOOM with their software and mechanical engineering know-how support this ecosystem: They quickly link every machine to the platform, develop individual strategies for digital transformation and thus make AXOOM the initiator and partner of integrated Industry 4.0 solutions.
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