10 Ways Enterprises Can Use the Edge - InformationWeek

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3/18/2021
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10 Ways Enterprises Can Use the Edge

Edge computing is very much a work in progress, but there are several interesting use cases at work today and more anticipated for the future. Here's a look at the possibilities.
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Manufacturing Shop Floor Machines Operate More Reliably

Image: Pixabay
Image: Pixabay

Industrial manufacturer Harrison Steel Castings operates electric arc furnaces and other precision machinery across on its 650,000 square foot factory floor. Networking these machines was cost prohibitive, so the IT staff used USB drives instead for data transfer, Sneakernet style. 
 
Harrison IT Director Shane Rogers subsequently chose an edge computing solution from Scale Computing. Now, he's using a small cluster of hyperconverged machines on the shop floor that collect machine and production data at regular intervals. This allows the staff to make better educated, data-driven decisions about their production process and machine maintenance. In addition, the speed and ease of data access helps with defect analysis and allows quality improvements to be put in place faster.

"In order to consistently produce precision engineered steel castings, it’s critical that we are able to collect and analyze data as close to the source as possible to ensure our machines are continuously calibrated," said Rogers. "The extreme conditions that exist in and around our electric arc furnaces was another challenge that made collecting data a challenge with conventional infrastructure. With a tiny footprint and minimal power requirements, our hyperconverged infrastructure can be placed where we need it, allowing us to harness our data to make smarter decisions and better castings."

 

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Lisa Morgan is a freelance writer who covers big data and BI for InformationWeek. She has contributed articles, reports, and other types of content to various publications and sites ranging from SD Times to the Economist Intelligent Unit. Frequent areas of coverage include ... View Full Bio

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