The latest trend to connect devices and machines to automate them and control them centrally is unstoppable. The possibilities for data and information exchange on the Internet of Things (IoT) are almost infinite. IoT has already been integrated in most industries like f. e. logistics, heat and power supply, medical engineering, agriculture etc. With the growing Industry 4.0 more ideal and more efficient ways to use resources is created. By connecting sensors, the devices become more and more intelligent. Machines can make decisions themselves by evaluating and using the received data, f. e. by measuring the temperature in the room and adjusting it to the specified temperature or by comparing an actual value and set point of the inventory. Systems recognize themselves, if they should give commands to feed heat or to cool down. They recognize when the critical point of the inventory is reached to f. e. order new goods or to stock up the goods in time.
The controller and its cloud solution play an important role here. To guarantee a smooth communication between the cloud and the controller, both products should come from one hand. That is why the PACcubes series joins the PACcloud via MQTT with the PACcubes Station over a simple function block. That is how a direct communication is accomplished. Furthermore, the graphical programming interface of PACstudio will make a simple access to program the controller for newcomers from all subjects. It has a high memorability effect because of its technical signs and symbols. That way, engineers and technicians can implement their own ideas without having to learn a single line of programming code. An integral concept, which brings a lot of advantages.
PACcloud: On the Internet of Things by graphically programming the controller
PACcloud is the key to the Internet of Things. The cloud is the foundation of data and information exchange between devices and machines. It is also possible to monitor decentral systems over internet-based monitoring. For example, data can be recorded in a local memory and a central data cloud. The PACcubes Station is brought into the cloud instance of the IBM Internet of Things Foundation over an MQTT function block. It provides a simple and clear user interface, from which devices can be added and managed with least effort possible. That is how not only the connectivity amongst in-house devices is guaranteed, but also to devices of other companies.
Into the Cloud with MQTT
The MQTT protocol is the most important protocol for IoT. It also provides a reliable communication over unstable connections. In 1999, the MQTT protocol was originally developed as M2M communication protocol. Now it is used for entering the Internet of Things. It can transmit all kinds of data, no matter if it is text or binary code. In general, the MQTT protocol builds on TCP and can be encrypted with SSL/TLS at any time.
The principle of the MQTT protocol is simple: The messages are distributed immediately, as soon as the event occurs. That saves bandwidth and CPU and MQTT client applications can react immediately, after receiving the message. Therefore they do not have to send frequent requests to the server about new messages. The Communication is running over an MQTT broker, where messages are transmitted over the publish/subscribe pattern. That is how devices can be implemented into PACcloud over simple function blocks. Machines can now communicate freely and requests from the user can be accessed conveniently.
The German software engineering company ProSign Process Design GmbH is developer of the graphical programming software iCon-L as well as all programs resulting from that software framework like miCon-L, test.con and the automation solution PACcubes. ProSign has many OEM partners with who they distribute controllers for different conditions and requirements with programming software which is exactly tailored to the controller.
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