Data Ingestion into Azure Time Series Insights for Big Data Applications
Industrial data from the factory floor or any operational process (OT data) is now a significant driver of big data initiatives. The benefits of sending OT data to big data and enterprise applications range from digital transformation to greater resource management to reducing costs and achieving quick ROI. However, there are continued challenges in bridging the gap from OT to IT.
Until now, collecting OT data and sending it to IT systems has not been cost-effective, requires custom code, is not easily scalable, and can create a series of proprietary technology entanglements that leave companies with siloed data they can’t easily access on the shop floor. Connecting industrial data to IT systems sounds simple, but in reality, is very complex.
OT data comes in multiple data formats, proprietary protocols, and with no contextual information. It is designed for operations, directly coupled to applications and often exists on isolated networks. IT, on the other hand, needs standard data formats, data objects, contextual information, security built-in, and publish/subscribe methodology to make use of the data.
Many customers specifically want to use Microsoft Azure services to enable OT-IT integration, including Azure Time Series Insights to monitor, analyze, and visualize industrial IoT analytics data at scale. However, many customers are writing custom code to connect to assets, which is not scalable or repeatable. Many who are able to get data to the cloud drop it into a lake and a lot of custom transformation is required to get value in Time Series Insights.
Now customers can use Ignition to connect to OT data for a single source of truth, and the Azure Injector Module from Cirrus-Link to define the OT data for IT. Ignition connects to OT devices natively, then the Azure Injector Module easily connects any contextualized tag data from Ignition into the Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure through the IoT Hub. With a simple configuration, tag data will flow into the Azure IoT Hub using an easy-to-read JSON representation.
The result is a solution that allows customers to collect data from the shop floor and deliver it ready-to-use to Azure Time Series Insights. Ignition plus the Azure Injector from Cirrus-Link offers quick and simple configuration, tools instead of coding, is cost-efficient, and scalable. Once connected, customers can us Azure Time Series Insights to visualize and analyze billions of events to spot anomalies and discover hidden trends in their data.