Intelligent I/O for the IIoT

10 February 2020

Opto 22 has launched groov RIO, a family of intelligent, distributed input/output (I/O) for IIoT and automation applications.

groov RIO is able to quickly connect traditional wired switches and sensors directly to Ethernet networks, software applications, and cloud platforms without intermediary control or communication hardware, such as PLCs, PACs, or PCs.

Although many smart wireless sensing devices have begun appearing at the edge, the majority of I/O switches, sensors, and transmitters use wired connections. Traditional remote I/O requires an industrial controller or gateway in order to propagate these signals to other systems, which limits their availability to enterprise consumers. By contrast, a groov RIO unit can be installed and operated independently, using its embedded software tools and protocols to share data instantly across the organisation.

Remote condition monitoring applications that need to move many real-world signals into on-premises or cloud-based software I/O integration typically requires multiple components and specialised skill sets. A variety of field I/O modules need to specified, designed, installed, and wired. Controls engineers need to program PLCs for signal processing and data collection. Then networking and software engineers need to configure communication gateways and servers that finally deliver data to consumers. With so many layers between data production and consumption, these systems also require significant ongoing maintenance in order to provide robust communication.

groov RIO is said to address all these issues with flexibility that speeds integration of IIoT applications. Once installed, it can be independently managed and configured through browser-based tools. Per-channel I/O type and signal-processing options through groov Manage eliminates the need for a master control unit, and support for standard enterprise network services like DNS, DHCP, and VPN facilitates network connectivity. Embedded communication options range from efficient data publishing with MQTT Sparkplug to advanced signal processing, data aggregation, and transactions with databases and web services, using the low-code Node-RED environment and runtime.

groov RIO also fills the role of standard remote I/O for sensing, control, and visualisation in industrial automation applications. GRV-R7-MM1001-10 is compatible with any Modbus/TCP master and with Opto 22’s groov EPIC platform.

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