- LF Edge welcomes Foxconn Industrial Internet (FII), HCL Technologies, OpenNebula, Robin.io, and Shanghai Open Source Information Technology Association to robust roster of community members working to advance open source at the edge
- FII sponsors Smart Agriculture SIG within the Open Horizon Project
- Home Edge’s Coconut release leverages EdgeX Foundry to enable more data storage options across different devices
Momentum within the open-source community continues to build. New members are joining and new work projects add utility. LF Edge, an umbrella organization within the Linux Foundation that aims to establish an open, interoperable framework for edge computing independent of hardware, silicon, cloud, or operating system, has announced addition of four new general members (FII, HCL, OpenNebula, and Robin.io) and one new Associate member (Shanghai Open Source Information Technology Association). Additionally, Home Edge has released its third platform update with new Data Storage and Mult-NAT Edge Device Communications (MNDEC) features.
“We are pleased to see continued growth among the LF Edge ecosystem,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, Networking, Edge and IOT, the Linux Foundation. “Open edge technology crosses verticals and is poised to become larger than the cloud native ecosystem. We are honored to be at the forefront of this budding industry and welcome all of our new members.”
Approaching its two-year mark as an umbrella project, LF Edge is currently comprised of nine projects – including Akraino, Baetyl, Fledge, EdgeX Foundry, Home Edge, Open Horizon, Project EVE, Secure Device Onboard (SDO) and State of the Edge – that support emerging edge applications across areas such as non-traditional video and connected things that require lower latency, and faster processing and mobility. LF Edge helps unify a fragmented edge market around a common, open vision for the future of the industry.
One of the project’s newest general members, FII, plans to sponsor a Smart Agriculture Special Interest Group (SIG) within the Open Horizon project and soon, an LF Edge Smart Agriculture End User Solution Group (EUSG). Open Horizon SIGs are designed to identify use cases within an industry or vertical, develop end-to-end reference solutions, and promote the solutions, use cases, and the group itself. LF Edge EUSGs gather user requirements through cross-project discussion with end users and generate demos, white papers, and messaging in order to prioritize project features and inform project roadmaps.
Home Edge’s third release, Coconut, is now available. Coconut includes new features such as Multi-NAT communications (which enables discovery of devices in different NATs) and Data Storage. In collaboration with EdgeX Foundry, a centralized device can be designated as a primary device to store the data from different devices. Home Edge expects its next release will be available in 2021 and will include real time data analytics features. More information on Home Edge Coconut is available here.
LF Edge sessions from the 2020 Open Networking and Edge Summit (ONES) virtual experience are available on-demand.
LF Edge’s “On the Edge with LF Edge” webinar series, launched this year, has produced seven episodes to date, with overview discussions of each of the projects.
More details on LF Edge, including how to join as a member, details on specific projects and other resources, are available.
“HCL Technologies is excited to join the Linux Foundation Edge community. We look forward to collaborating with industry leaders to help create and promote Edge Computing frameworks for wider adoption, leveraging our expertise and investments in IoT, 5G and Cloud technologies”, said GH Rao, resident, Engineering R&D Services, HCL Technologies.
“We are delighted to join the LF Edge community as part of our ONEedge initiative”, said Constantino Vazquez, Chief Operations Officer, OpenNebula. “OpenNebula, which has traditionally been used for Private Clouds, has now become a True Hybrid Cloud platform with a number of powerful features for making deployments at the edge much easier for organizations that want to rely on open-source technologies and retain the freedom of being able to use on-demand the providers, locations and resources that they really need.”
“Robin.io is excited to join the Linux Foundation Edge,” said Partha Seetala, CEO and founder of Robin.io. “Open edge technologies is a large and exciting opportunity for Robin technology and cloud-native ecosystem; we are honored to be at the forefront of the enabling and promoting of Kubernetes-based Edge Computing frameworks for wider adoption.”
“The Shanghai Open Source Information Technology Association has joined LF Edge to implement open source innovation in China, promote the establishment of an open source ideological and cultural system that is compatible with the innovative application of the Digital Economy, and promote the design of laws, regulations and institutional frameworks that are conductive to the ecological development of open source.”
Many industry pundits and observers seem to not understand all the ramifications and potentials for 5G. I’ve listened to podcasts from John Gruber at Daring Fireball and the guys at Accidental Tech Podcast talk about how 5G isn’t providing the anticipated boost for data speeds for their new iPhone 12s. But 5G provides for so much more than that.
I’ve had an opportunity to talk with people from the new Open Networking Foundation and check out this open-source community springing up. Here is a recent press release. Open source is burgeoning right now. Cynics say it’s just a way for big companies to cut development costs. I think it goes much deeper than that given licensing protocols and the spread of technology. This one is interesting and poised to take (among other things) Industrial Internet of Things to a deeper level.
The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) announced that ONF’s Aether 5G Connected Edge Cloud platform is being used as the software platform for the $30M DARPA Pronto project, pursuing research to secure future 5G network infrastructure.
DARPA is funding ONF to build, deploy and operate the network to support research by Cornell, Princeton and Stanford universities in the areas of network verification and closed-loop control. ONF will enhance and deploy its open source Aether software platform as the foundation for the Pronto research work, and in turn the research results will be open sourced back into Aether to help advance Aether as a platform for future secure 5G network infrastructure.
Aether – 5G Connected Edge Cloud Platform
Aether is the first open source 5G Connected Edge Cloud platform. Aether provides mobile connectivity and edge cloud services for distributed enterprise networks as a cloud managed offering. Aether is an open source platform optimized for multi-cloud deployments, and it simultaneously supports wireless connectivity over licensed, unlicensed and lightly-licensed (CBRS) spectrum.
Aether is a platform for enabling enterprise digital transformation projects. Coupling robust cellular connectivity with connected edge cloud processing creates a platform for supporting Industrial Internet-of-Things (IIoT) and Operational Technology (OT) services like robotics control, onsite inference processing of video feeds, drone control and the like.
Given Aether’s end-to-end programmable architecture coupled with its 5G and edge cloud capabilities, Aether is well suited for supporting the Pronto research agenda.
Aether Beta Deployment
ONF has operationalized and is running a beta production deployment of Aether. This deployment is a single unified cloud managed network interconnecting the project’s commercial partners AT&T, Ciena, Intel, Google, NTT, ONF and Telefonica. This initial deployment supports CBRS and/or 4G/LTE radio access at all sites, and is cloud managed from a shared core running in the Google public cloud.
The University campuses are being added to this Aether deployment in support of Pronto. Campus sites will be used by Pronto researchers to advance the Pronto research, serving as both a development platform and a testbed for use case experimentation. The Aether footprint is expected to grow on the university campuses as Aether’s 5G Connected Edge Cloud capabilities are leveraged both for research on additional use cases as well as for select campus operations.
A growing ecosystem is backing Aether, collectively supporting the development of a common open source platform that can serve as an enabler for digital transformation projects, while also serving as a common platform for advanced research poised to help unlock the potential of the programmable network for more secure future 5G infrastructure.
“At Google Cloud, we are working closely with the telecom ecosystem to help enable 5G transformation, accelerated by the power of cloud computing. We are pleased to support the Open Networking Foundation’s work to extend the availability of 5G and edge capabilities via an open source platform.”
Shailesh Shukla, VP and GM, Networking, Google Cloud
“Cornell is deploying Aether on campus to bring private 5G/LTE connectivity services with edge cloud capabilities into our research facilities. We expect private 5G/LTE with connected edge cloud to become an important and integral part of our research infrastructure for many research and operational groups on the campus. We also see the value of interconnecting a nation-wide leading infrastructure with Stanford, Princeton and ONF for collaborative research among university researchers across the country.”
David Lifka, Vice President for Information Technologies and CIO, Cornell University
“Princeton University is deploying Aether on campus in the Computer Science Department in order to support the Pronto research agenda and offer it as an experimental infrastructure for other research groups. This deployment will enable private 5G/LTE connectivity and edge cloud services and will complement Princeton’s existing P4 enabled infrastructure on campus. We plan to also explore how some of our mission critical production use cases can be supported on a private 5G Connected Edge Cloud.”
Jay Dominick, Vice President & CIO, Princeton University
“Ciena is pleased to be an early collaborator on the ONF’s Aether project. We have an Aether site running in our 5G lab in Montreal, and we are excited by the prospect of helping enterprises leverage the 5G and edge cloud capabilities of Aether to help build transformative solutions.”
Stephen Alexander, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Ciena
“Intel is an active participant of the ONF’s innovative Aether project to advance the development of 5G and edge cloud solutions on high volume servers. ONF has been leading the industry with advanced open source implementations in the areas of disaggregated Mobile Core, e.g. the Open Mobile Evolved Core (OMEC), and we look forward to continuing to innovate by applying proven principles of disaggregation, open source and AI/ML with Aether, the Enterprise 5G/LTE Edge-Cloud-as-a-Service platform. As open source, Aether will help accelerate the availability of innovative edge applications. Aether will be optimized to leverage powerful performance, AI/ML, and security enhancements, which are essential for 5G and available in Intel® Xeon® Scalable Processors, network adapters and switching technologies, including Data-Plane Development Kit (DPDK), Intel® Software Guard Extensions (Intel SGX), and Intel® Tofino™ Programmable Ethernet Switch.”
Pranav Mehta, Vice President of Systems and Software Research, Intel Labs
The Aether ecosystem is open to researchers and other potential partners who wish to build upon Aether, and we welcome inquiries regarding collaboration. You can learn more at the Aether website.
About the Open Networking Foundation:
The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) is an operator led consortium spearheading disruptive network transformation. Now the recognized leader for open source solutions for operators, the ONF first launched in 2011 as the standard bearer for Software Defined Networking (SDN). Led by its operator partners AT&T, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, Google, NTT Group and Türk Telekom, the ONF is driving vast transformation across the operator space. For further information visit http://www.opennetworking.org
I first heard about the Open Manufacturing Platform during my last trip to Germany, well, my last business trip anywhere, last February. I wrote about it here–Open Manufacturing Platform Expands.This effort, led by Microsoft and BMW joined by ZF, Bosch, and ABInBev, “helps manufacturers leverage advanced technologies to gain greater operational efficiencies, factory output, customer loyalty, and net profits.” That’s a tall order. These are companies that I’ve seen leverage technology for improvements over the years. This should be an advancement.
This month’s news items (2) relating to OMP include NI through its recent acquisition Optimal Plus joining the organization and a new deliverable from the OMP’s working group.
NI says that it has joined OMP “with the goal of establishing an architecture and standards for auto manufacturers to better leverage and automate analytics to improve quality, reliability and safety.”
I had an opportunity to interview Michael Schuldenfrei, NI Fellow and OptimalPlus CTO about smart manufacturing, what OptimalPlus adds to NI, and OMP. The roots of OptimalPlus lie in enterprise software relative to manufacturing of semiconductors. An early customer was Qualcomm who used the software to collect and analyze data from its numerous manufacturing plants. It branched out into assemblies, such as with a new customer Nvidia. Later the company added mechatronics to its portfolio. That was a good tie in with NI.
Rather than become just another smart manufacturing application focusing on machines, OptimalPlus brings its focus to the product being manufactured. Given NI’s strength in test and measurement, this was a definite synergy. As I have written before here and here, this enterprise software addition to NI’s portfolio is just what the company needs to advance a level.
Michael told me he was an early advocate for OMP due to seeing how his technology worked with Tier 1 automotive suppliers to drive digital transformation process.
NI announced that its latest acquisition, OptimalPlus, has joined the Open Manufacturing Platform (OMP), a consortium led by BMW, Microsoft, ZF, Bosch and ABInBev that helps manufacturers leverage advanced technologies to gain greater operational efficiencies, factory output, customer loyalty, and net profits.
The OMP’s goals include creating a “Manufacturing Reference Architecture” for platform-agnostic, cloud-based data collection, management, analytics and other applications. This framework will provide a standard way to connect to IoT devices on equipment and define a semantic layer that unifies data across disparate data sources. All in all, this has the potential to create a rich, open-source ecosystem that enables faster and easier adoption of smart manufacturing technologies.
In the same way that interpreters at the United Nations help delegates communicate and make new policies, standardized data formats accelerate the adoption of big data and machine learning, creating a universal translator between multiple machine and process types. OptimalPlus, now part of NI, will bring to OMP its vast domain expertise in automotive manufacturing processes and provide leading production companies with actionable insights and adaptive methods from its big data analytics platform.
“We’re honored to be invited to join the prestigious Open Manufacturing Platform, which plays a key role in helping manufacturers all over the world innovate,” said Uzi Baruch, VP of NI’s Transportation business unit. “With pressure mounting to ensure quality and prevent faulty parts from shipping, it’s important that manufacturers have access to the transformative powers of AI, machine learning and big data analytics. We’re excited to collaborate with industry leaders in the OMP consortium to help manufacturers evolve and optimize their processes.”
AI and advanced analytics help to streamline manufacturing, reduce costs and improve quality, reliability and safety. OMP makes it easier for manufacturers to deploy this technology across their operations and fulfill the promise of smart manufacturing.
White Paper: Insights Into Connecting Industrial IoT Assets
The second bit of news describes a first deliverable from the OMP as it progresses toward its objective.
OMP announced delivery of a critical milestone with the publication of our first white paper. The IoT Connectivity Working Group, chaired by Sebastian Buckel and co-chaired by Dr. Veit Hammerstingl of the BMW Group, authored Insights Into Connecting Industrial IoT Assets. Contributions from member companies Capgemini, Cognizant, Microsoft, Red Hat, and ZF present a consensus view of the connectivity challenges and best practices in IIoT as the 4th industrial revolution unfolds. This paper is the initial publication laying out an approach to solving connectivity challenges while providing a roadmap for future OMP work.
Manufacturing at an Inflection Point
The intersection of information technology (IT) and operational technologies (OT), as well as the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT), presents opportunities and threats to the entire manufacturing sector. In manufacturing, multiple challenges complicate the connection of sensors, actuators, and machines to a central data center. Lack of common standards and proprietary interfaces leads each engineer to solve similar problems, introducing inefficiencies and forcing the same learning curve’s ascension over and over. The long renewal cycles of shop floor equipment, software, and processes present gaps in modern technologies and a general avoidance of making significant institutional changes. This initial publication begins to tackle these problems and lays the groundwork for future, more detailed work.
Each connectivity challenge will have a range of diverse constituents and the content of this paper addresses issues faced by individuals and teams across job functions. Operational technology (OT) professionals are responsible for the commissioning, operation, and maintenance of shop floor equipment. Information technology (IT) personnel look after overall data processing, the hardware and software infrastructure, and enterprise-wide IT strategy. General managers and logistics teams are typically aligned at a corporate level, coordinating processes across a network of plants. Each of these functions will have roles spanning from operational hands-on to strategic and managerial. The unique demands of each part will require connectivity solutions to be forward-thinking and value-accretive while offering practical solutions implemented with minimal incremental investment.
Industrial IoT Challenges
Also explored in the paper, are the IIoT devices’ critical real-time needs for repeatability and high availability. An example is an AI model that optimizes the parameters of a bending machine based on the current air temperature and humidity. Possible connection failures or high latencies can lead to stopped or interrupted processes or products with insufficient quality.
Manufacturing throughput requirements vary from low bandwidth for simple sensors using small packets to much higher bandwidth required for streaming data for video analytics, vibration sensors, or AR/VR visualization. A holistic connectivity solution can address this complexity successfully, spanning from the individual devices on the shop floor up through edge gateways and servers to the central data center or cloud resources such as compute and storage.
Networks are usually customized to their precise environment and the desired function, and therefore can be very complex.
In the white paper, we discuss the functions of each of the network levels, their benefits and limitations, and security considerations. Additional sections of the document cover common challenges in IIoT, connectivity levels, basic principles for successful connectivity solutions, communication types, and best practices for program implementation.
Looking for an opportunity to learn about the leading edge of Open Source community work? Check out the Open Networking & Edge Summit next week.
- Deep Dive demonstrations on 5G, Edge, IOT, O-RAN, AI, Cloud Native & CNFs covering most important enterprise, cloud and telecom use cases
- Expert live sessions on “Why Open Source for Edge?” answered – Over 75% say collaborative market creation and adoption acceleration are top factors for participating in open source
- Total value of software created by shared innovation model totals $7.3B (2000+ Devs over 6+ years), according to new COCOMO research, “Estimated Development Value of LFN Software”
- 5 tracks, 13 keynote presentations, 80+ sessions with thousands of peers attending to collaborate on business value of open networking & edge
The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling innovation through open source, has marked significant progress in the open networking and edge spaces. In advance of the Open Networking and Edge Summit happening September 28-30, Linux Foundation umbrella projects LF Edge and LF Networking demonstrate recent achievements highlighting trends that set the stage for next-generation technology. “We are thrilled to announce a number of milestones across our networking and edge projects, which will be on virtual display at ONES next week,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, Networking, Edge and IOT, at the Linux Foundation. “Indicative of what’s coming next, our communities are laying the groundwork for markets like cloud native, 5G, and edge to explode in terms of open deployments.” Recent Acceleration within Networking & Edge includes:
- LFN is shepherding the culmination of Cloud Native and 5G (5G Cloud Native demo, OVP, which now includes Cloud Native requirements).
- The industry is becoming accustomed to a new way of compliance and verification out in the open (via OVP) – be it cloud native, 5G, Edge, or otherwise.
- SDN + NFV: OPNFV celebrates its sixth birthday as CNTT prepares to issue its Baraque release; meanwhile, OpenDaylight issues Aluminum, its 13th release.
“We are together in a tough period. Thanks to all developers and contributors of LFN and LF Edge to tirelessly propel various projects to be on the trac,” said Dr. Junlan Feng, chief scientist at China Mobile, general manager of AI and Intelligent Operation R&D Center, and LFN Board chair. “Cloud Native and 5G are also top priorities of China Mobile to strengthen the experience of our customers. For moving forward, we see there is a great opportunity to fuse together network automation and network intelligence through ONAP, Acumos, Edge, etc. EUAG under LFN is conducting a study to collect and analyze the common requirements of 5G and intelligent network in our industry. We as a community will continuously work together. Thanks to Linux Foundation for taking the lead.”
At the edge, unification has happened and projects (e.g., Akraino, EdgeX Foundry, and Fledge) have delivered deployable code. And the new LF Edge Vertical Solutions Group is working to enable easily-customized deployments based on market/vertical requirements. Opportunities exist for end users across verticals – e.g., enterprise, automotive, industrial – to participate in shaping the direction of how open source gets deployed at the edge.
Join the launch event, “Launching the LF Edge End User Community” on October 1, co-located with ONES. “Open source collaboration from edge to network is critical to achieve compatibility and complementarity. ONES is THE event for communities to come together – learning about the latest trends in projects and determining how to evolve technology across boundaries and borders, ” said Melissa Evers-Hood, governing board chair for LF Edge and vice president, Intel Architecture, Graphics and Software, Software Business Strategy.
Technology in action at Open Networking & Edge Summit
See innovation in action during the virtual ONES event, September 28-30 and immerse yourself in the latest open source innovations across networking and edge with community-driven demos in the LF Networking & LF Edge Pavilion. The demos will be open throughout the event but visit during booth hours to engage with the demo managers and ask questions. Key demonstrations include:
- OVP Automation DevOps: Agile Adoption in VNF/CNF based Network Service Industry: This demo will leverage ONAP SDC, ONAP VF-C, and OVP VTP projects to build DevOps for OPNFV Verification Program end-to-end VNF and Network service testing which helps to address agility, automation, and testing challenges.
- Self-Healing Using Streaming Analytics & Observability for Latency Sensitive Kubernetes Workloads: This demo showcases components necessary towards zero touch infrastructure automation using Kubernetes enhancements, streaming analytics, host telemetry, and a viable path to deployment.
- Real-Time Sensor Fusion for Loss Detection: This demo shows how different sensor devices can use LF Edge’s EdgeX Foundry open-middleware framework to optimize retail operations and detect loss at checkout.
- Managing Industrial IoT Data Using LF Edge: LF Edge projects EVE and Fledge will show how they can securely manage, connect, aggregate, process, buffer and forward any sensor, machine or PLC’s data to existing OT systems and any cloud.
The event also features expert keynote speakers, 80+ sessions, and five separate tracks, including: Business Critical & Innovation; Carriers: Core/Edge/Access; Cloud Networking & Edge; Enterprise, Networking & Edge; and Sponsored Tutorials.Due to the current COVID-19 outbreak, ONES is being offered virtually for only $50 US. Register today and join the community September 28-30:
Support from Project Technical Steering Committee Chairs
“Launched in 2018, and founding project of LF Edge umbrella, Akraino delivers an open source software stack that supports a high-availability cloud stack optimized for edge computing systems and applications. With three successful releases, the community of over 40+ companies engaged worldwide, more than 20 fully integrated edge blueprints, blueprints tested in 15 user labs and a community lab, and a growing list of user deployments across the globe, Akraino truly become the enabler of edge computing use cases across Telco, IoT, Cloud, and Enterprise use cases,” said Kandan Kathirvel, TSC-Chair, AT&T, and Tina Tsou, co-chair, Arm. “This ONES event will be an opportunity to learn more about the edge use cases and Akraino solutions to it.”
“EdgeX Foundry is in its 4th year of development as a Linux Foundation project.With 6 successful releases, a community of over 180 committers worldwide, more than 7 million container downloads, and a growing list of commercial companies adopting and using EdgeX (like Accenture, HP, ThunderSoft, Tibco, IOTech Systems, and Jiangxing Intelligence), we believe EdgeX has established itself as one of, if not the, premier open source edge solution frameworks,” said Jim White, TSC Chair, EdgeX Foundry and CTO of IOTech. “We are excited that ‘edge’ has been incorporated into the formerly Open Network Summit, and we are looking forward to our participation in the new “edge” tracks with our fellow LF Edge project members.”
“Fledge is an open source framework and community for the industrial edge focused on applications for critical operations, condition-based monitoring, predictive maintenance, quality, situational awareness and safety. Fledge integrates IIoT, sensors, machines, processes and other industrial assets with existing ISQ95 systems and the cloud” said Mark Riddoch, Fledge TSC Chair. ” Fledge 1.8 is a mature, field-tested solution operating in power generation/transmission/distribution, water and wastewater processing, oil and gas, discrete manufacturing, pharma and professional auto racing. We invite manufacturers, equipment suppliers, system integrators, and partners to use Fledge and join our community as we grow THE open source application stack for industrial transformations.”
“Being a young stage one project, Open Horizon is grateful for the opportunity to meet so many people active in the open source networking and edge computing areas. Despite not being able to meet face-to-face, the Linux Foundation’s LFN and LF Edge have provided us with a great format that allows us to have personal, in-depth discussions with anyone who is interested from the comfort of home, and without needing to shout over the crowds to be heard. We hope you’ll come visit us and enjoy our short demo,” said Joe Pearson, TSC chair, Open Horizon and Technology Strategist, and IBM Cloud.
“This event will be an opportunity to learn about the pivotal changes, new emphasis, and growth in the OPNFV community. OPNFV’s conformance testing and infrastructure projects, led by the contributions of Orange and many other industry leaders, will soon benefit from even more Telco participation as the CNTT task force members merge with OPNFV. Also, we have paid-forward our successes by taking-on many Linux Foundation Networking Interns in OPNFV this year. Join us and hear our stories,” said Al Morton, OPNFV TSC Chair.
“Our ONAP Community is actively working on the certification of our 7th Major Release (Guilin) scheduled for the end of this year. This release continues to increase the support for 5G in areas of network slicing and O-RAN integration, ETSI (e.g. SOL007) and 3GPP standards, as well as our E2E CNF Orchestration chain,” said Catherine Lefevre, AVP-Network Cloud and SDN Platform Integration, AT&T, and chair of the ONAP Technical Steering Committee. “The ONES Summit is a great event where enterprises who have embraced ONAP can showcase their latest innovations. Also, do not miss our demo corners, which will illustrate areas such as: Onboarding 5G CNFs with ONAP, Policy-based RAN Management using O-RAN’s Open-Source Non-RealTime-RIC, ONAP Policy Framework Integration with Bell Canada’s Control Loop Use-cases, and much more. We also invite you to our special panel, ‘ONAP & Cloud Native – the Best of the Two Worlds’, where we will present an overview of our ONAP Cloud Native journey.”
State of the Edge (SOTE)
“As edge computing goes mainstream it will bring forth a wave of technologies that require cooperation across the entire ecosystem to deliver value to end customers,” said Matt Trifiro, CMO of Vapor IO and co-chair of The Linux Foundation’s State of the Edge project. “The Open Networking and Edge Summit creates opportunities for technologists and end users to collaborate around open source for edge and networking that will revolutionize the cloud, robotics, artificial intelligence, healthcare, manufacturing, data centers, mobile devices, smart cities, and autonomous vehicles.”
Thanks to Terrence O’Hanlon of ReliabilityWeb for cluing me in to this latest open source project regarding Digital Twins on LinkedIn. Somehow the OMG and I missed connections on the press release. Yet another case of cooperation among suppliers and users to promote the common good. Digital Twins form the bedrock of Industry 4.0 and whatever other modern industrial advance.
News in brief: Users to create standard terminology and reference architectures and share use cases across industries
Non-profit trade association Object Management Group (OMG) with founders Ansys, Dell Technologies, Lendlease, and Microsoft, announced the formation of Digital Twin Consortium. Digital twin technology enables companies to head off problems before they occur, prevent downtime, improve the customer experience, develop new opportunities, drive innovation and performance and plan for the future using simulations. Members of Digital Twin Consortium will collaborate across multiple industries to learn from each other and develop and apply best practices. This new open membership organization will drive consistency in vocabulary, architecture, security and interoperability to help advance the use of digital twin technology in many industries from aerospace to natural resources.
Digital twins, virtual models of a process, product or service that allow for data analysis and system monitoring via simulations, can be challenging to implement due to a lack of open-source software, interoperability issues, market confusion and high costs. In order to ensure the success of Digital Twin Consortium, several leading companies involved in digital twin technology have joined the consortium prior to inception. This category of early innovators, called Groundbreakers, includes: Air Force Research Lab (US), Bentley Systems, Executive Development, Gafcon, Geminus.AI, Idun Real Estate Solutions AB, imec, IOTA Foundation, IoTIFY, Luno UAB, New South Wales Government, Ricardo, Willow Technology, and WSC Technology.
Membership is open to any business, organization or entity with an interest in digital twins.
“Most definitions of digital twin are complicated, but it’s not a complicated idea. Digital twins are used for jet engines, a Mars rover, a semiconductor chip, a building and more. What makes a digital twin difficult is a lack of understanding and standardization,” said Dr. Richard Soley, Digital Twin Consortium Executive Director. “Similar to what we’ve done for digital transformation with the Industrial Internet Consortium and for software quality with the Consortium for Information and Software Quality, we plan to build an ecosystem of users, drive best practices for digital twin usage and define requirements for new digital twin standards.”
Digital Twin Consortium will:
- Accelerate the market for digital twin technology by setting roadmaps and industry guidelines through an ecosystem of digital twin experts.
- Improve interoperability of digital twin technologies by developing best practices for security, privacy and trustworthiness and influencing the requirements for digital twin standards.
- Reduce the risk of capital projects and demonstrate the value of digital twin technologies through peer use cases and the development of open source code.
An ecosystem of companies, including those from the property management, construction, aerospace and defense, manufacturing and natural resources sectors will share lessons learned from their various industries and will work together on solve the challenges inherent in deploying digital twins. As requirements for new standards are defined, Digital Twin Consortium will share those requirements with standards development organizations such as parent company OMG.
Founding members, Ansys, Dell Technologies, Lendlease and Microsoft will each hold permanent seats on an elected Steering Committee, providing the strategic roadmap and creating member working groups.
Sam George, Corporate Vice President, Azure IoT, Microsoft Corp. said, “Microsoft is joining forces with other industry leaders to accelerate the use of digital twins across vertical markets. We are committed to building an open community to promote best practices and interoperability, with a goal to help establish proven, ready-to-use design patterns and standard models for specific businesses and domain-spanning core concepts.”
“The application of the Digital Twin technology to Lendlease’s portfolio of work is well underway and we are already realising the benefits of this innovation to our overall business,” said Richard Ferris, CTO, Digital Twin R&D, Lendlease. “The time for disruption is now, and requires the entire ecosystem to collaborate together, move away from the legacy which has hindered innovation from this industry, and embrace Digital twin technology for the future economic and sustainable prosperity of the built world. Digital Twin Consortium is key to the global acceleration of this collaboration and the societal rewards we know to be possible with this technology and approach.”
“Dell Technologies is proud to be one of the founding members of Digital Twin Consortium. As the rate of digital transformation continues to accelerate, industry-standard methods for Digital Twins are enabling large scale, highly efficient product development and life cycle management while also unlocking opportunities for new value creation. We are delighted to be part of this initiative as we work together with our industry peers to optimize the technologies that will shape the coming data decade for our customers and the broader ecosystem,” said Vish Nandlall, Vice President, Technology Strategy and Ecosystems, Dell Technologies.
“The Consortium is cultivating a highly diverse partner ecosystem to speed implementation of digital twins, which will substantially empower companies to slash expenses, speed product development and generate dynamic new business models,” said Prith Banerjee, chief technology officer, Ansys. “Ansys is honored to join the Consortium’s esteemed steering committee and looks forward to collaborating closely with fellow members to further the Consortium’s success and help define the future of digital twins.”
Digital Twin Consortium members are committed to using digital twins throughout their operations and supply chains and capturing best practices and standards requirements for themselves and their clients. Membership fees are based on annual revenue.
Digital Twin Consortium is The Authority in Digital Twin. It coalesces industry, government and academia to drive consistency in vocabulary, architecture, security and interoperability of digital twin technology. It advances the use of digital twin technology from aerospace to natural resources. Digital Twin Consortium is a program of Object Management Group.
3MF Consortium joins Linux Foundation, announces new executive director as it moves from development to adoption
Open Source and Open Standards continue to expand influence in developing new technologies and applications. I love to see companies banding together to bring out useful new ideas. This one is interesting.
The 3MF Consortium, the organization dedicated to advancing a universal specification for 3D printing, has announced it is becoming a Linux Foundation member and that HP’s Luis Baldez is its new Executive Director (ED). Baldez supersedes Microsoft’s Adrian Lannin, who has served as ED since the 3MF Consortium was founded in 2015. Among the original creators of the 3MF Consortium, Lannin will remain a strategic advisor to the group.
The 3MF Consortium is among the original members of the Joint Development Foundation (JDF), which became part of the Linux Foundation in recent years to enable smooth collaboration among open source software projects and open standards. 3MF will take advantage of the combined strengths of the Linux Foundation/JDF alliance to advance 3D printing specifications and formats. With the majority of the world’s largest players in the 3D printing industry, 3MF Consortium represents the core of the industry’s innovation in this area.
“The 3MF Consortium has done the important work to create an open standard for 3D printing. The time is now to drive the evolution of 3MF from development to implementation,” said Baldez. “We would not be where we are today without Adrian Lannin’s leadership and contributions, and we’re looking forward to his insights as our ongoing advisor.”
Baldez was recently elected Executive Director by the 3MF Consortium membership to expand upon the technical progress and success of the 3MF standard by building new functionalities for the standard through collaboration with Linux Foundation and JDF. Baldez is a 3D printing veteran with experience across new research, market & business development. It is this combination of expertise that makes him well-suited for the ED role at 3MF Consortium, where the focus is maturing from standards development to implementation and adoption. Baldez has also held R&D engineering leadership positions at other multinationals and startups.
“Luis is a longtime champion of open standards and is an expert in the 3D printing space,” said Alex Oster, chairman of the 3MF technical working group and director of additive manufacturing at Autodesk. “Luis’ leadership and our collaboration with Linux Foundation will accelerate our work on 3D printing and help us build an even more vibrant network of contributions.”
The 3MF Consortium has grown rapidly since its formation in 2015, garnering new member investments and adoption across the industry’s leaders in 3D printing. It is supported by 3D Systems, Autodesk, GE, HP, Materialise, Microsoft, nTopology and Siemens among nearly 20 other companies and has been implemented in nearly 40 products across 22 companies. The 3MF specification is robust and includes six extensions that range from core and production to slice, material and property (including color), beam lattice and security. The Secure Content specification was recently released and establishes an underlying mechanism for payload encryption of sensitive 3D printed data based on modern web standards.