The manufacturing industry continues to quickly turn to IoT (Internet of Things) technology to optimize productivity, increase efficiency, increase availability and meet sustainability goals. As companies seek to leverage IoT in their connected device ecosystems, security and compliance remain a top priority.

Our commitment is to simplify the Internet of Things for general adoption. For this reason we are announcing the general availability of Nesting capabilities for Microsoft Azure IoT Edge This conforms to the ANSI / ISA-95 standard for network isolation. This IoT Edge solution adds other key enhancements that make it easier for businesses to take advantage of IoT, including Azure Defender for IoT, Azure IoT Edge security enclaves, Device update for IoT Hub, and Azure Digital Twins.

Unlock values ​​with nested Azure IoT Edge devices

Intelligent manufacturing faces a dilemma: Manufacturers want to improve their operational excellence through the use of modern cloud solutions, for example through predictive maintenance with artificial intelligence (AI). However, due to security concerns, they often cannot simply connect industrial systems to the Internet. For years, network separation within a facility has been a security principle recommended by the ANSI / ISA-95 standard, which is widely used in all industries with high security requirements to prevent potentially dangerous violations. However, this meant that a local network separation with the cloud was previously not possible.

By activating hierarchies of IoT Edge devices via the automation pyramid, manufacturers can collect, aggregate and forward data from their systems to the cloud without affecting their systems. The device management and communication functions of a single IoT Edge device have also been expanded to handle hierarchies of IoT Edge devices.

Figure 1: Hierarchy of IoT Edge devices for extracting data from the automation pyramid

Unleash the power of threat intelligence on the edge

Azure Defender for IoT can be used in conjunction with the nesting capabilities of IoT Edge for added security. It is a practical, agentless network layer solution that can protect both brownfield and green field IoT / OT environments from the growing threat of cyberattacks that affect production, steal sensitive intellectual property, and protect security. and cause environmental events. It continuously monitors industrial networks for threats, anomalies, or unauthorized activity without affecting the network or reliability.

Use nesting for IoT Edge to improve operations

Some of the world’s largest manufacturers such as Tetra Pak, Toyota Industries and Softing Industries are already investigating hierarchies of IoT edge devices in order to achieve added value through multilayer networks.

Tetra Pak extends digital services with hierarchies of IoT Edge devices

Tetra Pak, a pioneer in the food and packaging industry with a focus on sustainability, innovation and quality, uses the Azure IoT platform to Offer new services and improve customers’ operations. The focus of Tetra Pak’s new digital platform is the creation of robust and secure connections between production networks and the cloud for the transport of machine data and the orchestration of applications that run on the edge. Tetra Pak, which relies on IoT Edge’s new nesting capability to adhere to customers’ policies and layered networks, is an early adopter who worked with Microsoft to develop and validate the technology.

“With the solution we can get from IoT and the new nesting functionality for Azure IoT Edge devices, we can expand our capabilities with our customers to deliver even more value.”Magnus Wijk, IIoT systems architect, Tetra Pak.

Toyota Industries is expanding the capabilities of the company-wide IoT platform

Toyota Industries is active in various manufacturing businesses and has built GAUDI, a company-wide company Standardized IoT platform for collecting, storing and analyzing data. As part of its commitment to continuous improvement in manufacturing facilities, the company has put in place an AI-based mechanism to identify signs of failure based on device data and return the optimal parameters.

In accordance with the strict network requirements, Toyota Industries tries to use nested edge functions to create a layered structure between the factory and company networks.

Softing Industries is expanding the options for integrating production data

As a Microsoft partner, Softing specializes in the connectivity of products and solutions for OT / IT integration. Products such as edgeConnector Siemens support container technology and can be deployed on Azure IoT Edge and fully managed via the Azure platform. The components usually have to be implemented within the automation network on a lower network level in a layered topology. Azure IoT Edge support for nested topologies enables customer soaking efficiently manage the components of the companyeven if the components do not have a direct internet connection.

“Our connectivity products can be seamlessly integrated into Azure IoT Edge. With nested network topologies within the Azure IoT framework, we can continue to offer our customers secure and scalable data integration. “-Dr. Christopher Anhalt, VP Product Marketing, Softing Industrial

Use nesting capabilities for IoT Edge to take advantage of IoT

The nesting functions for IoT Edge complement the security-oriented, flexible solutions that Microsoft offers for industrial IoT users. Take part Hannover tradefair On April 12-16, learn how Azure IoT products and services are helping to simplify the process of connecting, managing, and securing IoT devices and empowering businesses to thrive with IoT.

Partners and customers can learn more about this new solution from it nested IoT Edge tutorial and Example on GitHub.

Additional IoT in manufacturing resources

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