- What is meant by an embedded system?
- What companies can benefit from an industrial embedded system?
- The purpose of embedded systems for production companies
- The benefits of implementing an embedded system in industrial automation
- What are the challenges of an embedded system?
Producing tangible value has never been easy. In addition to the need for strict control of a final product for quality purposes, production companies from different industries also need to control, automate and optimize their processes and resources.
An industrial embedded system is one solution that will allow you to make the production process more effective, economical, and eco-friendly. In this article, we’ll look at the possible applications and benefits of embedded hardware and software for production and manufacturing.
What is meant by an embedded system?
An embedded system, as the name suggests, refers to a special device or a set of devices that are integrated into the main system with the aim of performing a specific function. A smart TV is an example of using an embedded system (i.e., this involves a specific set of tools that allow someone to watch television using the Internet). However, the usage of embedded technology goes beyond entertainment purposes. It may also be used as part of an automated manufacturing system across different industries.
What companies can benefit from an industrial embedded system?
An embedded computer system can be used for industrial automation and control by businesses from the following industries.
- Food industry. The process of food production consists of many steps, and for each one, the company needs to keep track of product quality, follow sanitary norms, legal and industry standards, and reduce food waste. Industrial automation and robotics can help with these tasks. For example, there are systems powered by artificial intelligence (AI) that are able to distinguish between fresh and perished fruits, and embedded machine learning (ML) solutions can help with preventive and predictive maintenance of equipment.
- Municipal infrastructure. Smart parking is an example of embedded electronics. Powered by sensors, computer vision, and data analysis features, they are quite effective for parking lot management and generating profits for municipalities.
- Agriculture. Water, organic fertilizers, and manual labor are the main drivers in agriculture. However, this process can be optimized through the use of agricultural robots, which are examples of the Internet of Things (IoT) embedded systems. They can be used for rational soil fertilization and weed pulling.
- Machine-building enterprises. Embedded systems are at the heart of smart car development. Car manufacturers can also use embedded systems in their production processes to track quality and compliance for each part of the production line, as Audi does.
- Trading object service. Large stores and shopping malls can also use an embedded system for resources like electricity and heating control and consumption optimization.
- Pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Medical devices are embedded software examples, however, embedded software may also be used as part of an industrial control system by pharmaceutical companies in the process of medicine production and quality assurance.
The purpose of embedded systems for production companies
Embedded systems projects can be used for four main purposes aimed at achieving better efficiency during the manufacturing process in the following ways:
- To unify and centralize control over production architecture. Any manufacturing enterprise has a complex set of equipment that can be difficult to control and keep running. IoT-powered embedded hardware equipped with sensors can be helpful to control equipment and take timely steps if indicators like temperature, pressure, and humidity change.
- To reduce equipment maintenance costs. Artificial intelligence and machine learning solutions for predictive and preventive maintenance may also be used to prevent breakdowns and downtime, replace parts before they break and therefore reduce the cost of equipment maintenance.
- To optimize a production line’s performance and capabilities. Manufacturing automation is one of the core goals embedded systems are used for. With their help, automating and streamlining the production process becomes possible, plus automation technology helps to reduce human error.
- To monitor energy and production resources. An embedded system design can also be developed in a way that will easily connect it with resource consumption like electricity and heat. Data generated will provide you with actionable insights on how to decrease resource consumption while keeping all systems running.
The benefits of implementing an embedded system in industrial automation
Below are the main benefits embedded software for production automation can provide you with.
- Ability to control from any device. If you have an embedded system as part of your manufacturing equipment, you will be able to control it from any device, including a PC, tablet, or smartphone.
- Centralized data collection and cloud architecture. This allows you to store your data in a single place and utilize the benefits of cloud data storage such as encryption, protection, backups, and instant access from any device.
- Remote control. With the help of an embedded system, you can control your production process remotely around the clock, and get instant alerts via a specialized mobile app if some indicators deviate from the norm.
- Low service cost. Embedded systems require no manual intervention by operating personnel during normal operation.
- Flexible configuration and extension. Customized embedded systems are also easy to configure and grow with your business.
- Data archive. All the data generated can be stored on a protected server so that you can access it, find patterns, and get actionable insights.
- Reporting. You will also be able to get customized and visual reports that will help determine weak and strong points in the manufacturing process and optimize them to deliver more value to customers while cutting your costs.
What are the challenges of an embedded system?
Like other software solutions, embedded system development also has some challenges you should be aware of.
- Stability. Achieving a stable and seamless system is one of the core goals of an embedded program since the sudden disconnection of the embedded system from the core one can make timely delivery of information about the status and operation of your equipment impossible.
- Safety. An embedded computer is one more valuable data generation tool, so embedded system safety and protection is a priority and a challenge.
- Compatibility. That’s why creating an efficient embedded system architecture is quite difficult and requires a lot of research, testing, and technical issues that need to be solved. However, this is also a benefit of custom embedded software development. Taking the specifics of your production process into account will allow you to solve your current manufacturing issues based on the needs of your business.
Designing embedded hardware and software isn’t easy because it is necessary to take technical details and your business specifics into account while prioritizing stability, safety, and compatibility.
It requires a strong technical background and embedded systems development experience. We have the necessary expertise in-house and will be glad to help your manufacturing company increase the value of your product, cut operational costs, and boost effectiveness with the help of an industrial automation solution based on your business needs!
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.