Technology is moving at an amazing pace. Manufacturers around the world are observing this first-hand. Additive manufacturing, robotics, and IoT are some of the technologies that directly influence the way manufacturing businesses operate. The manufacturing industry is not isolated from the huge leaps in computer technology. Software packages used for managing complex processes and fabrication machine tools (for example, Computer numerical control milling and CNC turning) are everywhere and are generating huge amounts of data.
I have heard from many customers in the manufacturing industry that they are not sure what steps they need to take to gain insights from all the data they have.
My recommendation is to start small. Do not make big investments right at the start, but first discover what can be gained from the available choices. Then bring it into a platform that can provide many other possibilities, such as machine learning and AI. The Azure platform features many application services. But important to manufacturers, Azure gives access to hardware resources, such as faster CPUs, field programmable gate arrays (FPGA), and graphics processing units (GPU) — all are easily accessible for state-of-the-art solutions.
What is starting small? What is possible? While seeking answers to those questions, I came across the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Smart Manufacturing Systems (SMS) Test Bed. The test bed exposes data from a manufacturing lab. It is a great real-life example. The manufacturing lab actively collects and publishes data on the internet. Using the SMS Test Bed data as an example, I decided to put together an article to demonstrate how to put together a solution to gain insights from existing IoT data.
Read the guide and get started today
The result of my research is a solution guide. It starts with the data source, then describes how the data can be ingested and analyzed to gain insights. The guide covers various architectural aspects of this scenario and demonstrates the decision-making process for choosing the suitable technologies from the Azure platform, based on the requirements of the scenario. If you want to read and find out the details yourself, download the Extracting actionable insights from IoT data solution guide.