OSIsoft helps manufacturers embrace the internet of things

Rebecca Lambert
Rebecca Lambert
By Rebecca Lambert on 07 April 2015
OSIsoft helps manufacturers embrace the internet of things

OSIsoft is one of the strategic partners joining Microsoft at Hannover Messe in April. Here, the company will take the opportunity to showcase how it is helping manufacturers achieve business agility with the internet of things (IoT).

As Mário João, OSIsoft EMEA’s strategic alliances principal, explained, in particular it will demonstrate how it can help companies to advance the use of the PI System – the company’s flagship product – in conjunction with IoT to deliver operational intelligence. “The future world of our customers will be a hybrid of sensor-based data accessed through traditional and legacy system interfaces and gateways,” he said. “We are positioned and experienced to support our customers as they transition.”

Among other things, the company will soon be announcing new integrations with Microsoft Power BI (pictured) and Azure, as well as an Azure PI cloud service – all in the name of helping its customers embrace IoT.

While the IoT is, by and large, considered a new trend, much of today’s IoT is focused around sensor data. OSIsoft has, in fact, been delivering systems for collecting and managing real-time data for over 30 years. “Many of our customers have already been using connected systems and sensors to gain operational insights,” said Prabal Acharyya, worldwide director for Microsoft and IoT Alliances.

According to Tim Johnson, OSIsoft’s worldwide director of Partners and Alliances, what is different today is that companies are now able to use the internet and modern technologies to add sensors and enable much broader access to their operational data.

“What used to just be dumb sensors are now intelligent,” he said. “This is making people reconsider how they connect their assets to gain new insights to make intelligent, informed decisions.”

OSIsoft alone has just under one billion data streams licensed already. “This is helping manufacturers better understand their data and find new ways of creating and delivering value on top of their products,” said Acharyya.

Now, working with Microsoft and other partners, the company is delivering new solutions to help customers gain greater insights into their business. At the end of last year, for example, OSIsoft launched PI Integrator for Esri ArcGIS – an infrastructure for viewing real-time and historical operational data within the context of a geography. This capability can be used to bring rich operational data from sensors, control systems, real-time calculations, as well as events onto a live map.

“From integration with sensors such as wearable devices and gateways at the ingress side to integration with big data and machine learning systems at the egress side, the OSIsoft PI System continues to provide a common infrastructure for partners and customers to deliver operational intelligence,” said João.

Predicting the future with PI Server
Following Hannover Messe, OSIsoft will be hosting its Annual Users Conference where attendees will get the opportunity to see the new release of its flagship product – PI Server 2015 – an open enterprise infrastructure to connect sensor-based data, operations and people to enable real-time and actionable insights. The release will include a number of new features including the capability to natively capture, store, analyse and visualise data with future timestamps, like forecasts and predictions.

According to Johnson, PI Server 2015 marks the beginning of a PI System-wide initiative to expose and leverage future data, giving manufacturers the tools they need to operationalise intelligence and carry out predictive analytics.

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