Drives and Controls Magazine
Preparing machinery for Industry 4.0 applications
Published:  08 January, 2018

Eaton has published a White Paper entitled Preparing machines and systems for connection to the Internet of Things (IoT). It describes, in plain words, the basic points of the Industry 4.0 architecture, such as horizontal and vertical integration, cyber-physical systems and smart devices.

The paper discusses the benefits and challenges for machine-builders and systems integrators and provides practical recommendations on how to achieve modular, decentralised control systems that allow function blocks to be re-used, reducing engineering cycles.

The paper also explains how “smart” components can control function blocks autonomously in machines, based on the environmental data available. Using protocols such as OPC-UA, machines can be equipped with standardised communication features, allowing machine-builders to make their systems IoT-ready, and enabling end-users to integrate them into digital factories.

The White Paper provides three IoT examples, including one project that highlights how hydraulic power units can become part of a digital solution.