October 7, 2018

Programmable Cloud Controller

Industry is getting smarter! Is your company keeping up with digital transformation?

The Programmable Cloud ControllerTM (PCCTM) is the next generation solution to enable digital transformation of company products and production.

Programmable Cloud ControllerTM (PCCTM)

10 years of development has gone into a product that the largest electronics manufacturer has called “Disruptive” and the largest cloud provider has labeled the “Next Generation” in industrial controllers. The PCC combines the strengths and eliminates the weaknesses of traditional PLC and PC controllers. The PCC enables key objectives of Industry 4.0 initiatives for connectivity, machine learning and cloud connectivity in industrial, smart city and healthcare equipment.

Disruptive Features

An industrial grade alternative to a Raspberry Pi!

The PCC has been designed, built and tested using industrial components and best practices. The PCC can be used in industrial environments for real automation projects.

A machine ready alternative to a Soft PLC!

The PCC is a heterogeneous processing system which means the cores of its processors are separated into dedicated to hard real-time machine processing and into OS cores that use LinqThingz custom Linux distribution for HMI, AI, Security and Cloud Connectivity. The PCC is not subject to the same latency and security issues of implementing windows or raspberry pi type software-based logic controllers.

A solution with hard security separation!

The PCC separates the function of Industrial Communication and Network communication across the heterogeneous processing environment. There is no OS link between the IT network and the OT network virtually eliminating the possibility of standard cyber threats.

History

The PCC has its history in Industry 3.0 where PLCs where combined with PCs to create machines that had the capability to interact with graphical interfaces and database systems.  The typical implementation requited a 24″x24″ sub panel (or larger) to be populated with PLC, PC and all the associated wiring and connectivity software.  Brandt Innovative Technologies (BIT) required similar functionality but in a reduced form-factor for a portable military application.  The first evolution from the industry 3.0 solution consisted of a set of board level solutions that interconnected PLC/PC functionality through circuit traces rather than sub panels, control wiring and wire ways.  To further reduce the size, cost and improve performance the board-level solution was transformed into a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) solution.   Finally, the current PCC is powered by a single processor with multiple, heterogeneous cores for OT and IT functions connected by high speed data bus and shared memory.  The PCC represents the next generation in industrial hardware technology.   The suite of OT controls software applications and IT cloud applications positions to fill the gap as a low-cost, high-performance solution to next generation cloud-enhanced, industrial controls.

 

Use Cases

The PCC can be used along side existing industrial controls in a “Bolt on” application, can be using replacing PLC/PC controls in a “Bolt in” application or can be used as secure gate and data ingestion point in an edge/fog computing paradigm.

Bolt a PCC on to PLC to provide secure remote data and control

We understand that you may already have a significant investment in PLCs for your automation infrastructure and do not want to risk replacement with a new technology solution.  You can still benefit from the use of the PCC as a bolt on addition to your current or new system that is already designed around a PLC.  Our PCC has a plethora of communication options to interface to existing PLCs and give them the power of cloud computing.

Replace a PLC on your automation project

The PCC has hard real time I/O and tools like Ladder Logic editor to enable our PCC to replace PLCs in new factory and product initiatives.   Replacing a PLC and PC with the PCC saves time,  money and gives your new projects the power of secure connectivity and distributed processing to high performance cloud computing as well as integration to other cloud based business systems.

Use as a gateway for IoT and Legacy Industrial Devices

The PCC can be used to route, ingest or process data from modern IoT device or machines using legacy industrial protocols.   The PCC is far more that a protocol converter with the ability to cache data for high availability or transform live streams of data.  As a processor it can execute work functions as well as push data up stream to other processors such as cloud micro services.

Create a next generation VMI and automated workflow cell

High volume manufacturing processes can leverage automation technique like robotics to drive throughput and quality increases.  However, lower volume and higher mix discrete manufacturing still require manual assembly processes.   LinqThingz PCC along with other solutions build on LinqThingz Trainable Edge for a complete human automation solution discrete manufacturing.

The PCC may be leveraged as Logic Controller and take input data from category 4 safety relays light curtains and two-hand controls.   The PCC may be used as a gateway to ingest data from BOMLinq VMI solution, TOOLLinq tool tracking solution, ForcelInq Industry 4.0 DC motor controller and as an HMI delivering content for WorkLinq Work Instruction solution.

Incorporate PCC in a product

The PCC is not for just factory automation.  The PCC is an ideal solution for industrial products as well.   The PCC was combined with the LinqThingz HMI display,  SwitchLinq IoT POE switch, AlertLinq configurable visual an audio display and HeatLinq IoT enable heating solution to create the Rapid Cure Controller.  This device is a self-contained control product solution developed, laboratory tested and field proven to produce 90% workflow increase in solving one of the top five problems in a $1.5T aero-defense program.

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