With modern Information Technology (IT) concepts like machine learning and artificial intelligence, an organisation's data has become more valuable than ever before. The biggest hurdle for an organisation is how to get the data you already have to somewhere where you can start to build value from that data.
Operational Technology (OT), like SCADA systems and Building Management System, have existing in one form or another for decades, and provide the robust monitoring and control that keeps industry ticking over. Many organisations separate IT and OT into different areas of responsibility which results in different processes and approaches within each area. This often makes the integration of IT and OT a very difficult task.
The INDICIUM DataBus works like an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) to provide an easy to configure and manage platform for the exchange of data between technology domains. The complexities of integrating with a variety of different technologies in both domains has been simplified into easy to configure plugins leveraging existing standards and interfaces.
The INDICIUM DataBus makes integration of data sources painless. The user interface manages all aspects of configuration allowing you to setup data sources and data feeds easily and with confidence.
The plugin architecture provides a number of default integration options such as OPC, OLE DB and REST, while also allowing for unique data source plugins to be created using either the in-built IronPython plugin, or through implementation of custom .NET class libraries.
The INDICIUM DataBus features an HTML 5 interface for configuration and testing of all data sources and transformations, and the building of custom dashboards to allow you to view your data. The user interface uses responsive design techniques to adjust itself to the size of the device. This cross platform capability allowing you to use it on desktop computers through to smart phones and tablets.
Create and manage data sources and processing pipelines through an easy to use browser based interface. As you add new configuration or make changes to existing configuration, the DataBus responds instantly allowing you to gather feedback about what you've done.
Once you've mastered what's needed to process your data, the user interface allows you to copy that configuration so you can apply it easily to more data inputs. This allows you to build complex processing pipelines and apply them multiple times with minimal effort.
The DataBus captures a variety of parameters around the performance of the system, including data throughput parameters, and exception logging.
Any errors captured by the DataBus will be displayed through the user interface, allowing you to track down what part of the system is not working as expected and why.
The DataBus can also be used to directly monitor its host environment or others. Direct support for WMI allows the DataBus to query for server parameters such as CPU usage, available memory or disk and thousands more.
Build dashboards that merge real-time data and historical data into a view that's right for you. The easy to use dashboard designer means you can make complex dashboards with minimal effort. You can even use your real-time dashboards as a low cost alternative to an HMI.
Plugins simplify the interface into the systems and allow for clean and easy data Synchronisation events to be setup. The list of available plugins and features continues to grow, bringing the simplicity of the INDICUM DataBus to more applications.
The INDICIUM DataBus can use a variety of technologies to connect to OT systems such as SCADA and Building Management Systems (BMS). Most modern SCADA systems provide standards based interfaces for external systems to use for data access. The INDICIUM DataBus supports OPC DA (Data Access), HDA (Historical Data Access) and UA (Unified Architecture).
Alternatively, the INDICIUM DataBus can be used to communicate directly with Remote Telemetry Units (RTU) over a variety of protocols including MODBUS, DNP3 and PAKBUS.
The INDICIUM DataBus features direct support for a number of different databases including: Microsoft SQL Server, Azure Storage Tables, MySQL and OLE/DB.
OLE/DB allows for integration with a variety of different database technologies including historian products like OSI PI Historian.
Specialised software packages exist in a variety of industries for managing specific types of data. In the water management industry, packages like AQUARIUS TimeSeries are widely used for the management of hydrological data.
Where the INDICIUM DataBus does not directly support integration with a particular system, plugins can be developed by the customer and loaded into the DataBus. Alternatively, customised integration logic can be written in Python or C# directly into the DataBus itself, allowing near infinite customisation.
The INDICIUM DataBus can read and write data from a variety of different file formats including specific CSV formats for systems such as Hydstra TSM, AQUARIUS TimeSeries, AQUARIUS Forecast and Delft FEWS. Files can also be monitored for changes, allowing for rapid ingestion of new data written to files by other systems.
Cloud platforms like Azure make it very easy for organisations to store large amounts of data in the cloud. The INDICIUM DataBus allows for data to be written directly and securely into cloud data stores like Azure Storage Tables or SQL Server.
Data can also be synchronised using protocols such as OPC UA, MQTT or AMQP. This allows you to tailor your cloud integration to match your operational and security requirements.
Not all plugins are about reading and writing data. The INDICIUM DataBus includes a number of plugins for the real-time analysis and manipulation of data. This includes plugins for aggregation of data and the execution of customisable scripts.
Scripts can be written in Python or C#, with an evolving set of API's available to make it easier to work with your data. This allows you to bring intelligence to the edge, with smarts deployed near the source of the data rather than in the cloud. As a result, large amounts of data can be analysed and distilled, reducing the amount of data being transported and stored.
Indicium Dynamics is a member of the OPC Foundation. OPC is a standard based interface into operational technologies like PLC's and SCADA systems.
Managed when your data is synchronised. Choose a time or frequency, execute manually or automatically respond when new data becomes available.
Use the flexibility of CRON expressions to explicitly specify when you want your events to fire. CRON will let you explicitly align your schedule in the DataBus with the expected schedule for data availability.
Specify events to fire at a fixed repeating interval. Intervals can range from 1 second through to days. These simple schedules allow you to quickly set up automated replication where the exact time of the event is not critical.
Where supported by the data source, the DataBus can receive notifications and automatically process your data. This allows you to work with real-time data with minimal latency. Protocols like OPC allow you to subscribe to live data, allowing you to access data within milliseconds of it becoming available.
You choose exactly when you want to access the data either by viewing the data on a dashboard or pressing a button to fire the event. An event can also be programmed to fire on demand using rules written in a script.
The INDICIUM DataBus is built using .NET Standard, allowing it to be deployed in a very wide variety of locations including:
Deploy to Windows using .NET Framework 4.7 or .NET Core 2.0. Choosing .NET Core will provide a higher level of efficiency and performance, but will limit some options for integration in a Windows environment. Choosing .NET Framework will allow for integration with Windows features like WMI, OLE/DB, IronPython and classic OPC.
Deploy to Azure using .NET Framework 4.7 or .NET Core 2.0. Use the DataBus to stream data between systems and use the dashboard features to build real-time data interfaces to simplify data access and interpretation.
Deploy to a low cost device such as a Raspberry Pi. With most functionality available on these devices, you can connect remote assets to the cloud using a variety of OT protocols including Modbus, DNP3 and OPC UA.
Deploy to Linux devices using Docker containers for simple standalone installations. The Docker container houses everything you need to get the INDICIUM DataBus up and running.
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