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Web-based remote monitoring system
The Netbiter Argos 3 from HMS Industrial Networks, is a web-based remote monitoring system provides a comprehensive family of devices and services. Stuart Hannah, business development manager for HMS says: "One of the great things about Netbiter is that it can be used to monitor both fixed and mobile assets 24/7. Web-based means it's viable for any number of local or remote devices from a single asset, such as a PLC or frequency inverter, to a complete plant or process, and the inclusion of GPS means location-based asset management is also available. In the event of a problem you can instantly receive alarm emails or text messages and check online from anywhere on the Internet."
Netbiter comprises three main elements: the secure online storage, the gateway communication devices, and the online monitoring tools, and because data is both important and confidential HMS takes security as a key priority. "We use an online data centre called Netbiter ARGOS which is backed up at two separate locations," says Hannah. "Secure remote access is through multi-level passwords from any Internet enabled device, and firewall friendly communications protocols avoid IT issues at the user's sites."
The communication gateway devices connect to the site using serial communications or Modbus RTU protocols, and at selected time intervals they send data to the Netbiter server via wired or wireless communications. Viewing the information requires only a standard web browser, making it suitable for field service staff or business managers away from base. Customisable displays include downloadable device templates for establishing communications and graphical auto web pages. The server also contains libraries of ready-made graphical dashboards for popular applications
Although not originally conceived as a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) package, tools are included for the user to configure one. Access to the server information means users can log historical data and produce graphical trends or diagnostics, manage alarms, or automatically backup or restore remote configurations. Data can also be accessed by the user's own ERP system for further analysis.
For one-to-one applications where both monitoring and control are needed without storing data on a central server-such as stand-by generators, the Netbiter WS series of communication gateways with integrated web server is also available. These connect to most types of equipment and be accessed either by wired or wireless communications. They provide SMS and email alarms, as well as integrated graphics and remote management via a standard web browser. Support for an external GPS receiver makes it possible to identify the location of the equipment in real-time, which is particularly useful for fleets of rental machines.
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