Metrology for Industry 4.0 and IoT

Industry 4.0 and IoT

Wendy Van Moer

Industry 4.0 and IoT is a topic that appears more and more in today's news and industry. A lot has already been said about this topic and a lot more will be said… It is the beginning of a whole new future.

We had the honor to work on this issue with Prof. Mauro Serpelloni and Prof. Paolo Ferrari, both from the University of Brescia and two experts in the field. They invited and selected authors from the 2018 IEEE International Workshop on Metrology for Industry 4.0 and IoT to submit their contribution to our magazine. This resulted in some nice papers that will tell you all about the future. 

Speaking about the future… Only a few more days to go and we have to say goodbye to 2018 and welcome 2019! We are ready for it! 

I wish you all a peaceful ending of 2018 and a splendid beginning 2019!


Guest Editorial - The Fourth Industrial Revolution

Mauro Serpelloni and Paolo Ferrari

Today we are assisting the rapid growth of industrial applications involving the new Information and Communication Technologies combined with mass deployment of the Internet of Things (IoT); the change is so deep that it has been called the fourth industrial revolution. However, we must highlight that these profound transformations of the industrial world, often considered slow-reacting, are possible also thanks to the recent developments in the field of metrology; monitoring remote physical phenomena and trying to control them, requires the development of new sensors, new acquisition techniques and systems, improved algorithms, new performance assessment methods, and so on. Therefore, it is becoming more and more important that the contributions of metrology interrelate to the development of Industry 4.0 and IoT ecosystems and, in turn, the new opportunities offered by Industry 4.0 and IoT for the development of new measurement methods and apparatus. 

For these reasons, this special issue of Instrumentation and Measurement Magazine is focused on the relevance of the metrology for Industry 4.0 and IoT systems. Several authors who presented papers at the May 2018 IEEE International Workshop on Metrology for Industry 4.0 and IoT were invited to write submissions about their recently extended scientific research.

When dealing with IoT, we cannot miss considering structural health monitoring. The paper “IoT for Structural Health Monitoring” by Carmelo Scuro, Paolo Francesco Sciammarella, Francesco Lamonaca, Renato Sante Olivito, and Domenico Luca Carnì covers the most important and currently critical necessity concerning structural health monitoring from the point of view of IoT systems. An overview of the different types of Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) used to identify, detect and characterize the degradation and damage of all types of engineering structures is given, and then the benefits and the improvement, obtained thanks to the application of IoT paradigms, are discussed.

The paper “The Influence of Measurements and Feature Types in Automatic Micro-Behavior Recognition in Meal Preparation,” co-authored by Alberto Fornaser, Teruhiro Mizumoto, Hiroiko Suwa, Keiichi Yasumoto, and Mariolino De Cecco, deals with the need for a machine to understand and trace human activities and behaviors in order to enable it to support or to imitate human operators. The results include experiments for collecting human daily activities that confirm the identification accuracy of the micro-behaviors related to the handling activity with achieved accuracy in the classification of 78%. 

The role of location estimation techniques for Industrial IoT is emphasized in the paper “Enhancing Access to Industrial IoT Measurements by Means of Location Based Services” by Paolo Bellagente, Federico Bonafini, Claudio Crema, Alessandro Depari, Paolo Ferrari, Alessandra Flammini, Giovanni Lenzi, Marco Pasetti, Stefano Rinaldi, and Emiliano Sisinni. In this paper, after explaining the needs of location-based services in Industrial IoT, the authors highlight the advantages of their application to distributed measurements systems and distributed Human-Machine Interfaces. The characterization of the quality of the position estimation of sensors and actuators is carried out in a real world experiment using Bluetooth Low Energy and Ultra Wide Band techniques. 

The paper “Smart Quality Control Station for Non-Contact Measurement of Cylindrical Parts Based on Confocal Chromatic Sensors” by Paolo Chiariotti, Matteo Fitti, Paolo Castellini, Saverio Zitti, Marco Zannini, and Nicola Paone deals with the need for smartness in connected test stations. In particular, the dimensional measurement of cylindrical components for quality control is considered, and smart behaviors have been added to keep measurement uncertainty under control, by means of adaptive parameter adjustment. 

We hope that the content of this special issue can catch the interest of I&M Magazine readers, especially those involved in the challenging, exciting and promising world of Metrology for Industry and IoT.