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Connecting up Intelligent Manufacturing with Qseven modules

2017/03/15

Introduction

Over the decades China has been known as “The World’s Factory”, with all kinds of production facilities crowded in its major manufacturing cities. Riding the newest tide of industrial automation, Chinese government announced its Industry 4.0 agenda, which has encouraged the application of industrial robots to increase intelligence, productivity and efficiency.

The customer in this case is a giant manufacturer who owns many facilities all over the world, mainly in China. The scale of their assets brings economic incentive for the customer to adopt new equipment facilitating automation, and Advantech’s low-power and robust SOM-3567 became their preferred choice for building control hosts with an economic foot print, which can support the control system of robots as well as data display on tablets to facilitate management tasks.

Customer requirements

As the system has to connect robots, tablets and perhaps other factory assets as many as possible, rich I/O support is among prime requirements in addition to well-designed ruggedness that can withstand the strict environmental conditions in the factories. Low power consumption, small form factor and flexible modular design are also preferred for economic reasons.

Solution

Advantech SOM-3567 in COM Qseven form factor is ideal for this solution for the following reasons:
  • Supporting diverse I/O interfaces: Since the system is used to connect with robots and tablets for control and management purposes, SOM-3567, featuring a small Qseven form factor with rich interfaces such as external LAN, USB and GBIP, meets the demands
  • Low power consumption: Compliant with Qseven revision 2.1 specifications and powered by an low power but efficient Intel® Atom® E3800 processor with native extended temperature support, the SOM-3567 is able to restrain TDP within 8W and support a fanless design, which not only reduces electricity consumption but increases ruggedness
  • Economic cost: Qseven is a new form factor of computer on module focusing on low-end systems with economic benefits;
  • Flexible Modular Design: The Qseven form factor featuring a standard modular design is beneficial for component replacements and future upgrading
  • Extended Temperature Support: In addition to the processor’s native support for extended temperature range, all other key components of the system are designed with extended temperature support, so that the system can operate in the harsh factory environments with high stability and reliability
  • Support for Multiple Display Interfaces: Supporting data display, Advantech SOM-3567 provides channel reservation between eDP and LVDS to enable dual displays in legacy LVDS or advanced eDP panels with HDMI/DP interfaces. SOM-3567 also supports 3D APIs including DX11, OGL3.2 and OCL1.1, and hardware accelerators in H.264/AVC, VC-1 and MPEG2; therefore it is able to support graphics-intensive applications and high resolution playbacks without increasing substantial CPU load

Conclusion

For many manufacturers pondering on implementing production automation, whether their returns can justify their capital investment has always been among their main concerns. Therefore, solutions that can provide required performance with maximum cost-effectiveness, system reliability, high flexibility and integrability will increase incentives for manufacturers and accelerate the implementation of Industry 4.0.

Application Diagram

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