Special Issue "Internet of Things (IoT) Applications for Industry 4.0"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2019
Dr. Igor Bisio
Department of Electrical, Electronic, Telecommunications Engineering and Naval Architecture, Polytechnic School, University of Genoa, Via Opera Pia 13, 16145 Genova, Italy
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Interests: signal processing over portable devices (such as smartphones); context and location awareness; adaptive coding mechanisms; indoor localization; security and e-health applications; resource allocation and management for satellite communication systems; optimization algorithms and architectures for satellite sensor networks; traffic modeling; advanced controls for interplanetary networks and for heterogeneous networks
Prof. Andrea Sciarrone
Department of Electrical, Electronic, Telecommunications Engineering, and Naval Architecture (DITEN), University of Genoa, Via dell'Opera Pia 13, 16145 Genoa, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Interests: signal processing over portable devices (such as smartphones); context and location awareness; indoor localization; security and e-health applications; multimedia signal processing
The rise of new digital technologies, known as Industry 4.0 (I4.0), is a transformation that allows gathering and analyzing data across machines, enabling faster, more flexible, and more efficient processes to produce higher-quality goods and services at reduced costs.
I4.0 represents the fourth industrial revolution, and its genesis is due to the emergence of the Internet. Over the course of history, industry and, more general, society have benefited from technological advancements that have had an overwhelming impact and were focused in a certain time period; they were therefore called industrial revolutions. During the first industrial revolution (1765), we witnessed the emergence of mechanization, a process that replaced agriculture with industry as the foundation of the economic structure of society. With the second industrial revolution (1870), industry began to develop and grow alongside the exponential demand for steel. Methods of communication were also revolutionized with the invention of the telegraph and telephone, and so were transportation methods with the emergence of the automobile and the plane at the beginning of the 20th century. From 1969, the third industrial revolution has witnessed the flourishing of electronics, with transistors and microprocessors, as well as the rise of telecommunications and computers, consequently leading to programmable logic controllers and robots.
With the fourth industrial revolution, Internet technologies aim at connecting all production means to enable their interaction in real time, thus providing communication among the different players and connected objects thanks to technologies such as Cloud, Big Data Analytics, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
The Industry 4.0 framework has had a huge impact not only on manufacturing per se, with the emerging concept of the smart factory, but also on many other aspects of daily life. Indeed, the I4.0 environment opened doors to a new commercial scenario, introducing so-called smart products. This new framework is based on key concepts, such as cyber-physical systems and human–computer interactions. There are many macro areas effectively influenced by the I4.0 framework: (i) factories, (ii) power, (iii) health-care, (iv) transportations, and (v) buildings. Remarkable examples of innovative applications receiving a boost from I4.0 are the fully connected and highly customizable smart home, and continuous monitoring e-health platforms. The Industry 4.0 revolution, enabled by the D2D and IoT paradigms, provides huge advantages not only for the production cycle itself, but also for the society, which can benefit from the wide connectivity and ubiquity of services.
The main characteristics of the I4.0 revolution are mobility, typical of the IoT; employment of Cloud-Computing approaches; collaboration among different systems and different actors in a given framework of the production; and the exploitation of Big Data. In fact, in recent years the number of connected devices has grown such that nowadays there are more IP devices than people in the world. Statistics show that more than 1 billion smartphones were employed at the end of 2013, and this is projected to grow to 50 billion connected devices (i.e., not only smartphones but also embedded systems, sensors, etc.) by the end of 2020.
Indeed, the possibility to have Internet connections on the move (i.e., mobility) has significantly changed our daily life, opening the door to new services and possibilities. Also, Cloud Computing has been widely employed (i.e., 67% of Internet users in the US rely on Cloud services) and, for many functions, this emerging technology will even replace the PCs. On the other hand, collaboration is a partial consequence of these characteristics, which have enabled a new type of cooperation between the real and the virtual worlds, thus allowing cyber–physical interactions. Finally, regarding Big Data, mobile devices equipped with heterogeneous sensors produce an enormous quantity of data, up to 3 exabytes every day. These data are often different from each other, and their analysis and extraction of information represents a fundamental added value.
However, this emerging framework, which is driven by the Industry 4.0 revolution, brings not only advantages, but also great challenges, due to the huge number of devices and data to manage. For this reason, specific solutions must be designed, in order to cope with the typical issues related to the IoT, such as energy and storage constraints, and challenging scenarios.
Prof. Igor Bisio
Prof. Andrea Sciarrone
Manuscript Submission Information
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- Internet of Things
- production engineering computing
- production facilities
- ubiquitous computing
- ubiquitous devices
- connected devices
- smart products
- ambient intelligence
- context awareness
- smart factory
- Industry 4.0 applications
- efficient production
- management processes
- smart devices
- smart home
- smart health scenarios