It's been a long time coming, but the Japanese automation specialist FANUC is now kicking off the full-scale European launch of its IIoT platform - FIELD system. The name stands for "FANUC Intelligent Edge Link and Drive", while IIoT - or the Industrial Internet of Things - refers to the networking of devices so they can interact with each other and share data. One of the stand-out features of the FIELD system is that it is an open platform, meaning it is designed to link together production machines from different manufacturers and generations in a single factory, thus enabling comprehensive data analysis to be conducted along the entire process chain and propelling users ever closer to the coveted smart factory.
However, the FIELD system - which is already excelling in its native Japan - has yet another key feature that sets it apart from other IIoT solutions. It collects and analyzes machine data directly on site (edge heavy), without first transferring it to the cloud. The ability to immediately process data in the factory speeds up the production process, giving it a noticeable efficiency boost. When it comes to storage, the FIELD system is the only IIoT platform that lets users choose between keeping the data in the factory or uploading it to an external cloud and storing it there. "The FIELD system mainly runs locally. It enables users to respond quickly to changes in the ongoing production process without having to connect to a cloud," says Shinichi Tanzawa, President & CEO of FANUC Europe. However, if users want to store data for future evaluation or perform data analysis across multiple production sites, the program also has a cloud solution designed for that very purpose. What's more, customers can download FIELD system apps from the FANUC app store via the cloud.