Building a Structured Approach to the Industrial Network

The linkage between technology and future growth is strong. As McKinsey & Company characterizes, for western economies the growth of GDP will only come from the “do it smarter” companies that build a better business model.

As a result we see that many process and discrete Industrial Automation systems are undergoing dramatic transformations and adopting new strategies for industrial Ethernet. Many companies are transitioning to Ethernet connected controllers, computers, high speed motion control, cameras and power electronics. Every day, 160,000 new industrial Ethernet nodes are connected (I.H.S. Global/IMS Research). And there are estimates that 100% of plant floor devices will be providing data as soon as 2018.IA-P2P-StructuredCablingImage

As the role of the Industrial network evolves, the design, specification, installation and testing of Ethernet network cabling systems need closer examination. A battle of cabling methodologies is occurring on the factory floor. Structured cabling, adopted from the IT world and referenced from industrial standard TIA-1005-A, is pushing out from the Enterprise. And point-to-point cabling, or direct connections, common in control networks for many years, are pushing up from the machine level.

Understanding how to leverage a standards and structured based approach to factory floor physical design can be a critical factor in avoiding poor infrastructure, network sprawl, troubleshooting nightmares, and safety and security issues.

Planning the Network to Meet Future Needs

For the longer term these planned physical networks will help the “do it smarter” companies to avoid the rip-and-replace mentality and build an Industrial IP network fabric to more easily and securely connect vital services; from industrial computing and the cloud, wireless, video, remote and mobile access, to energy management, safety and security.

A review of Structured Cabling from the Enterprise to the Plant Floor

Want to Learn More? Visit our Cabling Infrastructure information page to learn more about how to best leverage cabling methodologies in industrial, including our technology brief, Structured and Point to Point Network Cabling for Industrial Automation. And for more about building the industrial network fabric visit the Industrial IP Advantage website.

Looking to improve your physical network design? Panduit can provide Advisory Services and access to a network of integrator partners to help you to assess your needs and apply design best practices providing you greater system reliability and enabling you to build a smarter Unified Business Foundation.

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