While we discussed last week best practices around selection of a wireless network monitoring solution for your mine, we didn’t get a chance to look at the impact the wrong solution can have on your network.
Access to your data in real-time is becoming increasingly critical. The more data you push over our networks, the more you need to apply the lessons of Smart IoT. Allowing a network monitoring solution, asset health solution, or just some remote “thing” you are pulling data from in your IoT strategy to utilize a majority of the bandwidth just isn’t acceptable, particularly if there is a smarter way to access that data while limiting the possibility of network disruption.
By definition, the connected mine requires connection to all your mobile and fixed devices at any one time. Monitoring of your wireless network to ensure its reliability and connection to all your devices is therefore paramount.
However, the unique environment in which miners operate, only allowing for a limited network bandwidth, combined with the criticality of the mining fleet applications quickly differentiate network monitoring solutions.
The thought of upgrading your in-pit wireless network can be a bit daunting and nerve-wracking. Are you going to have to suffer through a fork-lift upgrade? What kind of downtime will be associated? Will that downtime be network wide, or only on a few items at a time?
A little planning, and the right technology choices can take all the fear and concern out of this significant event.
Since the first broadband wireless network deployments in mining, there has been a strong use case for sending GPS corrections over these networks. GPS corrections are relatively small packets that are transmitted once per second from the GPS base station and must be received, with as little latency as possible, and in sequence, by the High Precision GPS (HPGPS) Receivers onsite. These relatively small packets should theoretically have little impact on the network, and since coverage is typically available, it seems a good fit.
Operational environments are no longer deployed in isolation and the attack surface continues to grow making it harder to secure the operational process. As organizations continue to digitize and look to differentiate within the market place, the traditional air-gapped operational environment no longer exists.
Therefore, more needs to done in order to ensure that proper controls are in place and greater overall visibility is achieved. Time to go beyond passive defenses and move towards active defense.
Running a digital mine requires access to real time monitoring data on all of your assets. With the large expensive equipment out in a mine, it’s easy to overlook the network that is relied upon to bring that data back to the office.
As your mine becomes more digital, accessing that vehicle data through your network becomes more and more critical, and monitoring your network assets become equally critical.
LTE offers good support for a multitude of applications over long distances, with some potentially significant advantages over Wi-Fi based solutions, particularly in the areas of interference and contention mitigation. However, there are still a number of challenges around meeting the demands of outdoor industrial real-time applications.
A hybrid LTE/Wi-Fi network may provide miners with the network their digital mine requires, especially as autonomy is more commonly deployed.
Over our last videos, we’ve tried to kill the Intelligent Endpoint without much success. So, we brought out the big guns – a Civil War replica Cannon.
Going back to our shooting range, we first shot the IEP from a cannon before badly hitting it with a cannon ball.
Watch the results.
If you have more test ideas, don’t hesitate to share them with us.
With a 20G shock resistance, the 3D-P Intelligent Endpoint is ruggedized and heavy! Many said it would make a great anchor. So, we listened to them and tried. Not only does it make a great anchor but also proved to be water resistant.
Check out the video.
Testing the ruggedness of the 3D-P Intelligent Endpoint (IEP), we have so far thrown the same device out of an airplane (4 times!) and driven onto it. The IEP was still perfectly working at the end of those two tests.
So, we took it to the rifle range and practiced our shooting skills. Let’s see if our testing unit can take a bullet.