Services

We cloud connect your assets

We help IoT-enable your products, machines or services so that your organisation can turn insight into action and use digital twins to build bridges between physical and digital, thereby enabling you to generate new revenue streams and do business smarter.
We are specialised within Industrial IoT and many of our projects involve global roll-outs of connected devices and cloud integration. We assist throughout the whole project cycle - from business case to operation - and we have implemented some of the largest Industrial IoT-projects in Scandinavia.

Services

IoT Cloud Platform

We design and implement enterprise cloud systems for IoT-data collection and integration with business systems. We can tailor solutions and we also offer a Microsoft Azure based IoT-Cloud Platform as either an out-of-the-box solution or as a design stepping stone.
Read more here.

Industrial Edge Computing

We can interface locally to existing OT/embedded systems, e.g. MES, Scada, Historians, PLCs and various sensors, and we can establish an entirely new Edge solution including development of electronics.
Read more here.

Cloud Architecture and Business Integration

We help you design and implement integration to Advanced Analytics, CRM, ERP or Connected Field Services, making your IoT-solution a 360 degree solution covering edge integration, data collection and commercial exploitation.
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PROJECT EXECUTION AND EXPERT RESOURCES

We have strong skills when the projects need to be executed. Project Managers, Cloud Architects and Cloud Developers, combined with a broad network of experts within e.g. Sensors, Embedded Development, Edge Gateways and Machine Learning.
Read more here.

Client scenarios

  • Connected Products

    We are constantly seeing stories of companies that managed to traverse the boundaries of “traditional” business models into one where value is created through data. And usually either creating new industries or, as it’s usually put, “disrupt” existing ones. In some of these cases products with extensive analytical capabilities are needed, but in many cases, products connected for the right reason with the right data available can cause the biggest impacts. We help you connect your products and make sense of your data, whether it is your new currency or just "permission to play"..

  • Smart Production

    Even though there is a huge push for Industry 4.0, most factories will still be using existing machinery for many years to come. Usually machines and production lines can be connected through their existing MES, DCS and SCADA systems and through internet enabled PLC solutions. At the same time, they often have few or no sensors measuring their operational health and efficiency. By using a cloud service and IoT sensors we can connect (and retrofit) machines to allow for a better operational overview, quicker issue resolution and predictive maintenance.

  • IoT Transformation

    It is evident that some products are not suitable for digitalisation, but it is also evident that the number of those products is diminishing. It can be an almost overwhelming task for a traditional company to embark on the journey towards digital products and connected services, as it involves activities that in the end will transform many parts of the company. We help you prioritise business cases and identify the best route to connecting your products. We guide your business and product development based on real experiences, realistic technology projections and an iterative approach starting with a Proof-of-Concept.

Activities

 

Let our senior advisors inspire you with a vast experience in digital innovation and knowledge about cutting edge IoT cases within your industry. We are not only technical experts, we also have some very sharp business and creative minds that can help your organization discover your IoT business potential.
How well adapted is your company for IoT business models and how do your competitors handle IoT? What existing assets or products do you have that you can build value upon through IoT? We provide you with an assessment of your business along with recommendations.
Our simple and effective process helps you identify the most fitting business cases for your organization. In the process we will answer the following questions:
How can your organization leverage the potential of IoT? How do we conduct a proof-of-concept? What is the total cost of ownership? Which are the major risks? What business cases should we refine, and which should we omit?
Let us test your business hypothesis with our "works-like, looks-like, feels-like" methodology. In the "works-like" phase we test the hypothesis with standard products and get valuable user feedback and workflow knowledge. The "looks-like" phase provides further details with form-factors, business case refinement and proof-of-technology. The "feels-like" phase adresses user experience and technology challenges.
We design maintainable, cost-effective yet scalable IoT-data collection platforms. We have significant experiences helping clients with requirement specification, detailed design and micro-service architecture while preparing the design for several levels of access and future analytics. We have established a platform for an IoT Data Collection Platform, based on our experiences from the projects we have been involved in. We continue to adjust the platform based on development in the Ecosystems and the experiences from our projects. We call this platform Beacon Tower.
Designing and implementing an IoT-Cloud platform differs from a typical "infrastructure lift and shift" cloud project. An IoT-Cloud project involves interfacing to devices / sensors (sometimes through a gateway/edge passing it on via Modbus, Profibus, CAN bus or other industrial protocols) and understanding signals; handling events and storing streaming data accordingly; administration of access to data and multi-tenancy support for enterprises; cost-effective micro-service design and implementation. We have deep understanding of the requirements of the IoT-Cloud and have carefully designed, implemented and specified requirements for some of the most demanding IoT-Cloud platforms in the Nordics, as well as created our own IoT-Cloud platform.
We help you go from prototypes to real-world products and make sure that it is within the agreed time-to-market, quality and cost. We handle development of electronics and selection of sensors while making sure that the balance between connectivity and power consumption is right. Examples on our device project experiences range from micro and extreme low power electronics, RF-design, FPGA and ASIC design to industrial EMC requirements, ISO 9001 and ISO 13485 validation.
Our senior advisors have many years of experience within management and handling of development of intelligent products. We handle the day-to-day project management as your company's trusted advisor, mitigating the risks and always focusing on a transparent and flexible project management tailored your requirements. We have noticeable project execution experience within highly regulated products, e.g. MDD/IVDD/QSR and FDA.
Security is a critical element of an IoT deployment. We have processes and experts that help you avoid incorrect data exposure and insecure infrastructure of devices and back-end.
New products and services are not always going to remain new. Therefore, we secure that maintenance and support are included in the project planning and organization.

 

Exploration

Our business and development framework consist of a slightly extended spiral commitment model, revised specifically for business case and PoC exploration.

Projects

Our project model is focused on systems of systems. It is an iterative and risk-minimising approach that suits modern project management methodologies.

Maintenance

Governance, operation, maintenance and product updates are integral parts of our project framework and mindset. In IoT-projects these parameters are key from the get-go.

Positioning technologies currently applied across industries:

Global Navigational Satellite System: Outdoor positioning requires line-of-sight to satellites, e.g. GPS: the tracking device calculates its position from 4 satellites’ timing signals then transmits to receiving network
–    via local data network, e.g. wifi, proprietary Wide Area Network
–    via public/global data network, e.g. 3G/4G

Active RFID: A local wireless positioning infrastructure built on premises indoor or outdoor calculates the position based on Time of Flight from emitted signal & ID from the tracking device to at least 3 receivers or when passing through a portal. The network is operating in frequency areas such as 2.4 GHz WiFi, 868 MHz, 3.7 GHz (UWB – Ultra Wide Band), the former integrating with existing data network, the latter promising an impressive 0.3 m accuracy. Tracking devices are battery powered.

Passive RFID: Proximity tracking devices are passive tags detected and identified by a reader within close range. Example: Price tags with built-in RFID will set off an alarm if leaving the store. Numerous proprietary systems are on the market. NFC (Near Field Communications) signifies a system where the reader performs the identification by almost touching the tag.

Beacons: Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signals sent from a fixed position to a mobile device, which then roughly calculates its proximity based on the fading of the signal strength. For robotic vacuum cleaners an infrared light beacon can be used to guide the vehicle towards the charging station.

Dead Reckoning: Measure via incremental counting of driving wheels’ rotation and steering wheel’s angle. Small variations in sizes of wheel or slip of the surface may introduce an accumulated error, hence this method is often combined with other systems for obtaining an exact re-positioning reset.

Scan and draw map: Laser beam reflections are measured and used for calculating the perimeter of a room and objects. Used for instance when positioning fork-lifts in storage facilities.

Visual recognition: The most advanced degree of vision is required in fully autonomous vehicles using Laser/Radar (Lidar) for recognition of all kinds of object and obstructions. A much simpler method can be used for calculating a position indoor tracking printed 2D barcodes placed at regular intervals in a matrix across the ceiling. An upwards facing camera identifies each pattern and the skewed projection of the viewed angle.

Inertia: A relative movement detection likewise classical gyroscopes in aircrafts now miniaturised to be contained on a chip. From a known starting position and velocity this method measures acceleration as well as rotation in all 3 dimensions which describes any change in movement.

Magnetic field: a digital compass (on chip) can identify the orientation provided no other magnetic signals are causing distortion.

Mix and Improve: Multiple of the listed technologies supplement each other, well-proven or novel, each contributing to precision and robustness of the system. Set a fixpoint via portals or a visual reference to reset dead reckoning & relative movement; supplement satellite signal with known fixpoint: “real time kinematics” refines GPS accuracy to mere centimetres; combine Dead Reckoning and visual recognition of 2D barcodes in the ceiling.

LoRaWAN: A low power wide area network with wide reach. An open standard that runs at unlicensed frequencies, where you establish a network with gateways.

Sigfox: A low power wide area network reminiscent of LoRa. Offered in Denmark by IoT Danmark, which operates the nationwide network that integrates seamlessly to other national Sigfox networks in the world.

NFC: Used especially for wireless cash payments.

Zigbee: Used especially for home automation in smart homes, for example. lighting control.

NB-IoT: Telecommunications companies’ IoT standard. A low-frequency version of the LTE network.

2-3-4G Network: Millions of devices are connected to a small SIM card, which runs primarily over 2G, but also 3G and 4G.

Wifi: The most established standard, especially used for short-range networks, for example. in production facilities.

CATM1: A low power wide area network, especially used in the United States.

Glaze IoT Cloud Project Process

Beacon Tower is Glaze’s Industrial IoT Cloud Platform that can act as either a stepping stone (Platform-as-a-Service, PaaS) or as a out-of-the-box solution (Software-as-a-Solution, SaaS) for collection of IoT-data.

Beacon Tower resides in Microsoft Azure and is designed as a customisable and cost-effective IIoT Cloud Platform that helps simplify deploying, managing, operating, and capturing insights from internet-of things (IoT)-enabled devices. Our customers have the full ownership of their data.

When running it as a PaaS we utilise the design and can run it on our customers’ Azure tenant and customise it fully to their requirements.

Beacon Tower connects to all sensors, PLC, DCS, SCADA, ERP, Historians and MES to gain maximum automation flexibility and ​prevent vendor lock-in.

For more information visit www.beacontower.io or read the PDF.

Edge Computing Categories and Questions

Device:
o    Sensors
o    Internet connectivity
o    Battery consumption
o    Field Gateway
o    Communication protocols (HTTP, AMQP, MQTT, Gateway)
o    Format of the telegrams sent to the cloud (JSON, Avro, etc.)

Data:
o    Number of devices & number of signals
o    Amount of data to transfer per day
– Event-based or batched or mix
– Transfer rate (every second, minute, hour)
o    Device timestamps
– Synchronized timestamps with cloud or not
– Local buffering on device, late and/or repeated data
o    Any time-critical notifications / alarms
– Latency expectations for non-time critical data
– Alarms generated by device and/or by cloud platform
o    Cloud-to-device messages & commands
o    Analytics
– Results from time-series data / Streaming analytics
– Analytics workflows on data, machine learning etc.
– Edge analytics / intelligence

Cost expectations:
o    Retention periods (for reporting purposes)
o    Aggregation of data, possibilities for cost saving

External integrations:
o    Reference data / online data

Administration, rights and access:
o    Requirements for multi-tenancy (segregated owners)
o    Owners/tenants and operators/technicians
o    Administrating access to data, auditing use
o    API management, consumption of data, 3rd party integrators

Operation:
o    KPI measurements for device
o    KPI measurements for cloud platform
o    Requirements on operators and SLA’s

User-interfaces and functions:
o    Operators/technicians
o    Customers/end-users

Glaze Business Innovation and Development Framework (BIDF)

1. Strategy

Creating an IoT Strategy that aligns with the existing company strategy and/or points out any discrepancies that needs to be addressed. The IoT Strategy should pinpoint type of IoT opportunities that should be sought and how they can support the Company delivering on their overall strategies.

2. Ideation

The Ideation phase is an innovative and creative phase where we identify the IoT opportunities within the company. This is done by using existing assets, industry expertise, industry analysis, strategy and IoT expertise to find opportunities for IoT endeavors. This is done in an structured but open-minded and creative setting.

3. Refinement

In Refinement the opportunities are detailed, prioritized and evaluated in a series of steps with the goal of finding a short list of initiatives the company want to pursue. These steps takes strategy, competence, risk level, customer maturity etc into account during prioritization.

4. Valuation

The short list of opportunities are detailed even further and business cases are created for each of them. This will lead to a decision which opportunity to pursue further.

Moving on from the Business Innovation phases to Development activities we focus on taking the minimum possible risk of building the wrong solution by using agile development practices.

5. Exploration

Proof of Concepts carried out in this phase in order to map out technology as well as user-oriented risks. This also refines the budget and thus valuation and business case. Also giving valuable input to baseline system architecture and eco system involvement.

6. Planning

Moving to Planning phase, the most promising business case has been selected and now it is time to plan the Minimal Viable Product (MVP), in terms of timeline, resources and detailed design.

7. Foundation

Implementing the baseline architecture, toolchains and most critical points of the project.

8. Development

Full MVP is developed using these three principles: Start small, don’t over-engineer; Agile software development – late changes welcomed; Continuous delivery – every change is immediately visible.

9. Operations

Operations in an IoT-project is more than just keeping the product alive. It is life-long updates and continous sharpening of features and business model, meaning new ideas are fed back in the Innovation and Development Framework.

Heat map example on a typical business case: