Automation systems are used to control relevant devices and components and to enable automatic forwarding of messages and anomalies to the relevant control center. Machine-to-machine communication (M2M) can not only optimize processes, but also have a positive impact on safety. If safety-relevant situations arise – for example, in the event of a fire, accident or burglary – it is essential to be able to react quickly. Automated communication between sensors, devices and control centers means that information transfer is much faster than human intervention and occurs in real time.
This plays a major role especially for building automation or even remote maintenance of buildings and systems. Numerous devices can be accessed remotely. Especially for production plants, intelligent warning systems that do not require anyone to be on site are ideal. For example, they transmit fault messages or alarms in the event of changes in operating states, to which the system there or an employee can respond directly. This form of monitoring saves costs, because the personal observation of machines, plants or devices as well as complete building complexes is no longer necessary, but is carried out by the modern communication between the individual components. In addition, the maintenance effort is reduced because numerous data are collected on devices and machines, which allow direct intervention in the event of repairs or the smallest changes.
In principle, various radio technologies are available for M2M communication. Most important, however, is the mobile network for intelligent data transmission between devices in buildings and central control centers. Wireless communication between machines not only offers the advantage that no complex installations have to be made: M2M safety technology can also be used in remote locations or parts of buildings where other radio technology is not available.
The challenge: (Fail-)safe automatic transmission of an alarm in real time
A manufacturer of pest control equipment has found a way to digitize the monitoring of individual traps in a building. If a trap is triggered, a specially designed module sends a corresponding message to the router, which forwards the signal to the server, from where the human pest controller receives a message on his mobile device. He then knows which trap to control. In this way, recurring and possibly fruitless rounds for manual control of the traps become unnecessary.
Inexpensive, functional routers were needed to configure this solution. Communication between the devices should take place via SIM cards, whereby the data volume must be flexibly adjustable. Automatic activation of these SIM cards at the user’s premises provides additional security, as does tunneling through VPN with a fixed private IP address and two fixed preconfigured target addresses per SIM. In addition, an API interface for map management was in the specifications. Ideally, both the hardware and the communications solutions should be provided from a single source.
The solution: Fusion IoT offers IoT SIM cards and a complete HW solution
In this constellation, safety in particular played a major role. Relevant events must be mapped in real time so that they can be reacted to directly, because legal requirements apply to the frequency of trap checks for animal welfare reasons. That’s why IoT SIM cards are the best choice here: they work not only in one, but also in several or all of a country’s existing mobile networks if required. Nevertheless, only a single SIM card is required, which automatically selects the most powerful network and thus ensures contact between the building and the control center at all times. An additional advantage is that coupling & extension with other applications is possible, such as switching on lights, sirens or starting a video surveillance.
Fusion IoT, a brand of Epsilon Telecommunications GmbH, was able to offer a complete solution here that meets all requirements. With national roaming, the user always has network coverage, provided that at least one of the three German network operators is available, and also always has the strongest network available with multiple coverage. Premium support and maximum flexibility in terms of data volume complete the package.
The result: Complete package for the entire M2M communication from a single source
With M2M communication and the use of special SIM cards, monitoring tasks can be controlled centrally and automatically. The entire process runs automatically and without human intervention. In this way, more economical processes can be created that can provide better comfort, efficiency as well as safety. Mobile WLAN routers enable the company to offer its services even if there is no WLAN on site or the end customer does not want to grant access to it. External systems can be easily connected via API interfaces. The platform can also be accessed on the move via smartphone or tablet.
The pest control equipment manufacturer has currently ordered 440 SIM cards, of which 225 are already active. In addition, they demonstrate their satisfaction by regularly accepting WLAN routers for applications outside the end customer WLAN together with the corresponding repeaters.