Case study

Intelligent IoT Suite for Industrial Robots

We developed a full-stack, on-premises IoT platform that equips manufacturers with robust IoT robotics fleet management and data analytics solutions

Key features

  • Manage and maintain robot fleets

    Manage and maintain robot fleets

  • Handle and analyze equipment sensor data

    Handle and analyze equipment sensor data

  • Predict and prevent device issues

    Predict and prevent device issues

Industry:
Robotics, Fleet Management, Logistics
Market:
Europe
Team size:
12 members
Cooperation:
2018 – 2019
Technologies:

C++ / Docker / Golang / GraphQL / GRPC / InfluxDB / Jenkins / Kubernetes / OpenAPI / PostgreSQL / RabbitMQ

Business challenge

Our partner is a European IT consulting and development firm offering a full scope of consultancy and software production services, including engineering solutions, business management, organization growth, and corporate transformation. When our partner lacked the engineering capacity and expertise required to meet the needs of one of their customers, they set out to look for an expert provider of industrial robotics software.

The rise of automation has made industrial environments safer and healthier places to work, yet around 540 million people worldwide suffer from lower back pain caused by physical strain from lifting and carrying loads at work. Not all kinds of work can be replaced by fully automated systems, however. This is where robotics in industrial automation comes into play for any industry in motion, be it industrial production, logistics, or construction. Combining machine intelligence and power, robots strengthen and speed up industrial operations and reduce the risk of workplace accidents and occupational disability.

Our partner established an agreement with a robotics-focused company to build a full-stack, on-premises IoT platform that would manage and maintain a fleet of high-tech industrial robots. Our partner’s customer requested an end-to-end robotics and Internet of Things suite of applications and services, from endpoints to data analytics.

Prior to this engagement, one of our partner’s co-founders had already cooperated with Intellias on several high-profile projects. To maximize their engineering potential and ensure a timely rollout, they turned to Intellias for expert help in IoT software development. Our specialists reinforced our partner’s team to accelerate the development of the IoT solution for their customer’s business.

Intelligent IoT Suite for Industrial Robots

Solution delivered

Intellias came up with a strategic framework for collaboration on all design, implementation, and post-production processes. This framework was based on a joint effort between Intellias and our partner to build a proprietary IoT accelerator that served as the groundwork for the custom IoT solution.

We augmented our partner’s team with 12 senior specialists, including backend and frontend developers, a QA engineer, a DevOps engineer, a UI/UX designer, and a project manager. Working alongside our partner, Intellias took responsibility for creating a vision and requirements for the IoT platform. The goal was to take the platform from pilot to maturity to suit the highly demanding needs of the modern industrial IoT:

  • Handle and analyze huge amounts of device sensor data
  • Achieve flexibility and extensibility beyond what off-the-shelf software can reach
  • Run our partner’s solution on modern embedded Linux OSs and easily connect it to other MCUs if needed

Based on the IoT accelerator, we built a vertical, from-the-bottom-up industrial robotics solution that provides connection to devices and offers functionality all the way up to frontend visualization and data analytics. This solution can be deployed on-premises or hosted in the cloud and supports various infrastructures including AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud without any cloud service provider lock-in.

The product we built offers solutions to the full range of end user’s needs:

  • Device connectivity and supplementary embedded connectivity systems
  • Data collection, transfer, conversion, and storage
  • Firmware updates
  • IoT protocols
  • Authorization
  • Fleet management
  • Device diagnostics and maintenance
  • Data monitoring, analytics, and visualization
  • Data science and predictive analytics

The custom IoT robotics solution we implemented ensures the possibility to manage device fleets and capture high throughput sensor data generated by industrial robots. The collected data provides insights on device use patterns, which helps to adjust devices for the needs of each specific user.

Alongside developing embedded software, together with our partner’s engineering team, we implemented a wireless firmware update feature. Automatic firmware updates of both industrial robots and the external devices connected to them happen over the air (OTA) and are critical for efficient data analysis, predictive maintenance, and remote configuration.

The Intellias team also designed and developed a custom web interface for this industrial robotics solution. The frontend dashboards allow users to view real-time information on:

  • fleet management (device registries, users, groups, organizations)
  • device performance (robots in operation, session lists, device KPIs, efficiency metrics)
  • maintenance (notifications, component statuses, annual technical inspections).

Business outcome

In tandem with our partner’s delivery team, we went from very little code to highly performant prototypes and finally to full-scale production of their custom IoT solution. The customer held a successful expo of their robots to showcase the implementation of the advanced remote fleet control enabled by the intelligent industrial IoT software that we built.

With the growing role of robotics in Industry 4.0, the IoT accelerator that made this solution possible is catching the eye of industrial businesses looking for highly customizable and cost-efficient platforms in contrast to standard out-of-the-box systems.

The industrial robotics software we developed brings these advantages to the customer:

  • Automatic firmware updates
  • Predictive and preventive maintenance to resolve issues before they occur
  • KPI monitoring and reporting
  • Set-up and adjustment on an individually configurable dashboard
  • Advanced KPIs and metrics along with sophisticated customizations
  • User profile recognition and settings recommendations
  • Human-assisted teaching powered by machine learning and AI
  • Seamless integration with ERP software environments
  • Creation and customization of user profiles across the entire robotics fleet

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Awards and recognition

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