Opto 22 announces new version of groov edge appliance with MQTT and OPC-UA drivers | Automation.com

Opto 22 announces new version of groov edge appliance with MQTT and OPC-UA drivers

October 242017
Opto 22 announces new version of groov edge appliance with MQTT and OPC-UA drivers

October 24, 2017 – Industrial automation manufacturer and Industrial Internet of Things tools developer Opto 22 announced a new version of groov, embedding IIoT technologies MQTT and OPC-UA drivers directly into its industrial edge appliance. Added to the groov View software for web and mobile visualization, and the open-source Node-RED development environment, the new release offers engineers, technicians, and developers a comprehensive set of tools for edge deployment in industrial environments.

These embedded capabilities are made possible through forging close partnerships with technology providers Inductive Automation and Cirrus Link Solutions, and are part of the Ignition Edge Onboard program.

A typical use case for the new groov edge appliance is gathering data from plant floor devices or from remote plants. A customer places groov near a machine or process, uses the built-in drivers to connect to existing control systems, analyzes the data, and publishes the results back to a central server or broker on premises or in the cloud. Applications like Ignition Enterprise or any MQTT/Sparkplug-compliant software can subscribe to the data.

This scenario is designed to eliminate complex networking architectures like VPNs, firewall configurations, and remote desktop software, because all communications to the broker use a secure outbound connection from control systems, whether publishing data or subscribing to it. Additionally, because groov is a complete computing appliance, a PC is not required.

Other use cases for groov:

  • A controls technician who needs to see Allen-Bradley CompactLogix variables on their smartphone for access from anywhere they are located
  • An OEM machine builder whose machine must periodically send operational data to a central location for predictive analysis and machine learning
  • A SCADA engineer who needs to efficiently control and acquire data from a large number of geographically dispersed locations over a cellular or other bandwidth-constrained network
  • A facilities engineer who needs energy use and HVAC status data transmitted to a cloud database for historical logging

Ignition Edge in the groov appliance includes both a built-in OPC UA server and MQTT module. The built-in OPC UA server includes drivers to popular PLC brands, including Rockwell Automation Allen-Bradley PLCs, Siemens S7 PLCs, and Modbus TCP devices. Other drivers are available at additional cost.

Originally launched in April 2013, the groov edge appliance is an industrially hardened computer appliance used for visualization, data handling, and connectivity. For data handling, groov includes Node-RED, an IoT application builder that connects to data sources locally and in the cloud, manipulates that data, and publishes the data to anywhere. The groov edge appliance was designed for security from the ground up, with communications to the appliance over two independent Ethernet interfaces protected by TLS encryption and user authentication. All configuration of the appliance is securely managed by the included groov Admin utility.

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