MIPI specifications can be leveraged by developers to create successful device designs, drive down development efforts and reduce costs across a number of IIoT applications.
Industrial IoT (IIoT) applications are forecast to grow massively over the next decade, driving productivity and efficiency gains across process industries such as oil and gas, food and beverages, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, energy and mining, as well as discrete industries such as aerospace, semiconductors and manufacturing.
The development of new cyber-physical systems that underpin this growth will be dependent on use of high-resolution cameras to power machine vision, high-resolution displays to enable rich user interfaces, and optimized command and control interfaces to connect sensors, actuators and other components.
This article explains how MIPI specifications, which are widely implemented within billions of mobile devices, can be leveraged by developers to create successful device designs, drive down development efforts and reduce costs across a number of IIoT applications.
Defining the industrial internet of things
The IIoT envisages highly digitized industrial processes that collect and share data through the use of connected machines and other devices. Using real-time analytics, data is used across wider industrial processes to proactively address production and supply issues, improve efficiency, enhance logistics and respond to new demands.
Growth in this market is being driven by technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence (AI), big data analytics, cloud computing, machine vision and robotics. By connecting the physical and digital worlds, the IIoT can monitor and optimize an entire industrial process and wider supply chain.
Benefits of MIPI specifications in IIoT
MIPI Alliance develops interfaces that connect embedded components (cameras, displays, sensors, communications modules) within electronic devices. MIPI specifications, conformance test suites, debug tools, software and other resources allow developers to create innovative connected devices.
The focus of the organization is to design and promote hardware and software interfaces that simplify the integration of components built into a device, from the antenna and modem to peripherals and the application processor. MIPI Alliance crafts all of its specifications to meet the stringent operating conditions required in mobile devices: high-bandwidth performance, low power consumption, and low electromagnetic interference (EMI).
MIPI specifications provide the following benefits to IIoT applications:
Uses of MIPI specifications
IIoT solutions will be built upon a broad range of devices. We’ve highlighted a few examples to demonstrate the applicability of MIPI specifications to different IIoT use cases.
Pharmaceutical quality control
Machine vision is essential to the pharmaceutical industry, being used for critical inspection processes such as checking package integrity, fill levels, safety seal integrity and labeling. Use of machine vision is critical to product quality, and a key driver of productivity. Use of high-resolution cameras is essential for these applications and other vision-based AI functionality.
MIPI specifications that enable machine vision include:
Automated industrial vehicles
Automated vehicles are used within many industrial processes to transport materials around a site, following predefined routes using radio beacons, cameras and lasers for navigation. Automated vehicles can contain hundreds of sensors and generate huge volumes of data.
MIPI specifications that support automated vehicles include:
Industrial control systems with advanced user interfaces
Machine control systems are becoming more advanced, connecting machines to a wider industrial process and providing rich user interfaces to allow operator monitoring and control.
MIPI specifications that support machine control systems:
More information on how MIPI specifications relevant to enabling IIoT are explained in a white paper, “MIPI Alliance: Enabling the IoT Opportunity.”
Kevin Yee is chair of the MIPI Alliance marketing steering group.