What is Industrial-Grade?

Understanding the importance of "Industrial-Grade"

Integrating information and communications technologies (ICT) with the current infrastructure is a digital transformation journey which critical industries, such as public utilities, oil & gas, mining, logistics and transportation must embark upon in the 21st century. This integration, to transform the current industrial infrastructure, into a dynamic, resilient, and adaptable “Smart” infrastructure is a huge challenge that introduces organizational and technological interdependencies as well as uncertainties and risks which can not only affect the scope, schedule, and budget of such transformation projects, but also affect the safety, reliability and cost-effectiveness of the underlying infrastructure during later stages of the system lifecycle.

 

To ensure the successful integration of wireless communications systems into industrial infrastructure, it is important to understand that “Industrial” is not “conventional” – that operational technology is not information technology – that deploying a wireless network to monitor a safety process is not the same as deploying the same technology to generate revenue.

 

This page aims to show “WHAT” makes wireless communications systems “industrial-grade” to perfectly meet the communications needs of critical industries such as Public Utilities, Oil & Gas, Mining, Public Safety and Transportation.

 

To learn more, please read our white paper series, The “Industrial” in Industrial Wireless Networks (Part 1 and Part 2). 

To estimate and compare the Life-Cycle Cost for various wireless coverage options such as private industrial LTE, public carrier LTE and industrial WiFi, click here.

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The Industrial-Grade Factors

The best engineering practice to overcome the problems caused by unsuitable IT systems installed in industrial environments, is to specify and deploy systems which are “industrial-grade”.


Industrial-grade wireless communications systems are purpose-built to fulfill the following set of criteria:

 

    • Industrial-grade wireless networks must be “safe”
    • Industrial-grade wireless networks must be “reliable”
    • Industrial-grade wireless networks must be “secure”
    • Industrial-grade wireless networks must be “cost-effective”

SAFE

Intrinsic Safety

Intrinsically safe equipment will NOT cause explosions, fire or other disasters in the hazardous industrial environment.

Ultra-low Latency

To enable high-speed detection, isolation and restoration of dangerous faults in industrial infrastructure. Such capability relies on ultra low latency systems.

Safety as Culture

The adoption of inherently safer process design, by building on firm knowledge in material science and technology, and of systematic education/training of personnel, is utterly important.

RELIABLE

Durability Alignment

Industrial-grade MTBF and lifespan, vs the regular equipment.

Environmental Impact

MTBF must consider real industrial hash conditions.

Complexity

The complexity must be controlled, including architecture, ease of learning and use, simple monitoring, etc.

SECURE

OT/IT Priority Difference

OT has a different set of priorities, because its main purpose is to enable safety, protect critical assets, and maximize up-time.

One of the key priorities of OT is security.

Physical Tampering

Bringing harm to the equipment/system by making the equipment physically vulnerable.

CVE Protection

Most cyber attacks involves unpatched systems, legacy equipment, etc.

COST-EFFECTIVE

Durability

The factors, such as high value assets and longer lifespan of industrial systems, require the wireless sys to be extra durable, which also means it needs to be cost-effective to make it viable over the long term.

Scalability

 The downward and upward scalability are both critical.

Versatility

The future wireless system must be flexible enough to accommodate all different type of applications currently running in the OT/IT realm.

Rapid Deployment

Industrial-grade wireless networks must be easy to deploy, expand and relocate.

Power Frugality

Availability of power can be challenging, hence the power consumption must be minimized. This in turn also affects the ease of deployment and other aspects.

Flexibility

The right flexibility for industrial use.

Maintainability

Initial cost & lifecycle cost, ease of learning and managing by IT, and effective management tools.

WHY REDLINE COMMUNICATIONS?

Redline Communications is focused on providing industrial companies with fit-for-purpose solutions to their mission-critical applications. Redline’s powerful, purpose-built, industrial-based, mobile, fixed and nomadic industrial wireless network solutions have been designed for reliable operations in the most challenging locations.

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Our solutions are designed and installed as an end-to-end operating network platform, specifically optimized for the unique requirements of the digital mine for both underground and surface deployments. Redline has delivered some of the world’s largest, fully connected and most functionally advanced wireless solutions for digital transformation.