Author: Samuel Pasquier
Date: April 3, 2019
As I look around the show floor here at Hannover Messe 2019, I’m impressed by the variety of companies in attendance. You can find everything from industrial sensors. Cables. PLC. Software. Applications. Cloud. Vendors from every sector have come together in Hanover, Germany. And what ties it all together? The network.
How did we get there?
One of the biggest challenges the industry is facing in the race to Industry 4.0 is history. It got decades of investment in industrial protocols, decades of competition in fieldbuses, huge install base of proprietary equipment and systems across the world that operate with different protocols across both IP and non-IP devices. How can you drive innovation, flexibility and growth at a global scale in such a fragmentated environment?
At Cisco, this is a challenge that’s very familiar… We love networking and we love to see how our customers benefit from embracing open technologies.
Remember when voice and data were on different networks? Cisco led a massive business transformation to converge these networks and transform communication to open, and interoperable systems with easy information exchange. Now Cisco is helping lead a similar convergence in industrial sectors, like manufacturing and utilities. To that end, we’ve made instrumental changes to our portfolio, including introducing Cisco Validated Designs, enhancing existing products and attaining new certifications, such as the Wi-SUN interoperability certification. We’re also the second company to be IEC 62443 Cybersecurity certified. This convergence is leading the transformation of these industries. And at the heart of it is the network.
You can thank the network for beer, too!
Take for example one of our manufacturing customers – Festo. As a global manufacturer of process control and factory automation solutions, Festo’s solutions are used across nearly every industry, from the precision needed for semi-conductor manufacturing through consistency for a craft beer brewer.
Festo offers 23,000 products and delivers 29,000 orders totaling more than 70 tons of products worldwide per day. To succeed in serving so many industries, Festo must be able to quickly adapt its production floor and network. And for that, it counts on Cisco.
Key to this flexibility? Cisco’s building block production design and modular hardware approach. “Festo’s automation systems rely on an advanced and integrated high-speed industrial architecture that is secure, reliable and provides real-time visibility – and to do this, we at Festo are utilizing Cisco’s brand new Industrial IoT networking solutions for the factory,” noted Philipp Neidlein, IT Product Manager, Void and Data Network at Festo. “Early deployments of the Cisco Catalyst IE3x00 Rugged Series has opened the door to new opportunities to simplify management while continuing to deploy cutting edge, data intensive IoT applications.”
Our team works tirelessly to make our IoT products and IoT blueprints deliver true business outcomes for our customers. As a product manager, I strive on customer feedback and it makes our days so much more meaningful when our customers recognize the products you thought through and took to market has such an impact on their business.
IoT In Action at HMI
Festo is just one of dozens of Cisco IoT manufacturing customers across the world. We are working with over 50,000 customers across industries to ensure the success of their digital journey and here are the ingredients – factory networking, industrial security, edge computing, and visibility and control.
At HMI we are showcasing our IoT Solutions along with our new IoT Products:
- Factory Networking
We can show you how a single, converged, unified plant-to-business network, tested and validated to support standard industrial Ethernet protocols – like Ethernet IP, Profinet and CCLink, along with industrial standards like Time-Sensitive Networking – can provide the critical backbone needed for Industry 4.0 transformation. What enables this interoperability is an IT-recognized Industrial Ethernet switching hardware set based on Catalyst enterprise switching technology, along with operations-friendly network and edge management tools. See how network simplification can reduce network maintenance costs, and reliable plant connectivity enables collaboration and innovation.
- Industrial Security
Safeguard and protect your operations with end-to-end security. Cisco is a recognized leader in cyber security, and our display at HMI 2019 steps customers through a layered approach to security, along with specific use cases for manufacturing. See how Cisco Identity Services Engine, Stealthwatch and Industrial Network Director come together to provide critical visibility and help simplify security in industrial settings. Secure remote access, micro-segmentation, identity-based security policies and whitelisting capabilities all help improve a manufacturer’s security posture to protect IP and ensure production integrity.
- Edge Computing
Drive industrial insights from the edge to your applications. Cisco has demonstrated our strength on the network, but our industrial customers also demand help processing data at the right time and place. See how Cisco’s combination of Edge Hardware, IOx – the virtualization and container infrastructure layer – and DevNet support tools help industrial customers extract, move and compute data from disparate sources around their plant to applications that drive more intelligent and actionable information, and make better decisions to optimize operations.
- Visibility and Control
Customers are seeking operational visibility into what’s connected to the network and which devices and systems are communicating with each other. From an OT perspective, asset inventory and visibility into operational information are critical needs. Meanwhile, IT needs to know what is on the factory floor and how to limit cyber threats. Yet these two stakeholders typically can’t see factory assets with the context necessary to address these requirements. Cisco is solving this problem through network management and security tools that provide visibility and security to factory assets. For OT users, Industrial Network Director identifies the devices on the floor. From there, use Stealthwatch to populate information in Cisco DNA Center. It’s the network visibility and management platform for IT team members, who use it to see the topology and craft a holistic, sensor-to-cloud cyber defense posture.
Used with permission from Cisco.