"Thanks to the technical professionals from Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab, who offered us with technical advice and excellent solutions to numerous crucial configuration and compatibility difficulties throughout our stay, bringing us new business opportunities and markets with a wide spectrum of potential applications and expectations!" ——Peng Zhang, General Manager of Wuxi Lingding Technology Co. Ltd.
In the era of Industry 4.0, "big data" is moving towards "smart data", inextricably linked to edge computing. Although the concept of edge computing has long appeared in the field of IT and the IoT in recent years, with the development and promotion of 5G networks, edge computing has gradually become the mainstream of enterprises. Edge computing is a distributed computing model that moves data storage and data processing closer to the point of operation or where the event occurs. This model can help enterprises have rapid on-site response capabilities, and collaborate with cloud intelligence to gain deep insights into the field. In China, cloud services are constantly extending and sinking to the edge. According to IDC Futurescape, by 2024, 25% of organizations will improve business flexibility through the integration of edge data and applications on cloud platforms; by 2026, 50% of Chinese enterprise CIOs will require their cloud and telecom partners to provide secure cloud-to-edge connectivity solutions for performance and consistency in data collection. Edge computing technology will be incorporated into all facets of our life in the future, and it will see tremendous expansion.
Wuxi Lingding Technology Co. Ltd. is a technology-driven, independent innovation high-tech enterprise, specializing in the industrial IoT and industrial intelligent manufacturing. It offers holistic solutions for industrial network communication and industrial digitalization projects. During Lingding Technology’s residce in our Shanghai AI Co-Innovation lab, our engineers assisted them in finishing the software architecture design of the next-generation edge computing gateway for industrial IoT scenarios using Azure IoT Edge, as well as verifying the compatibility and stability of hardware devices using Azure IoT Edge. In addition, AI capabilities such as Custom Vision are also extended to the edge devices of Lingding Technology, adding exploration of application scenarios such as visual quality inspection to SCAEdge.
（Lingding Technology and Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab‘s engineers）
Empower Wuxi Lingding Technology Co. Ltd.
Wuxi Lingding Technology Co. Ltd. came to Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab on November 11, 2020, with a goal of increasing their computing capabilities at the IoT edge with our technical enablement, while go co-sell with Microsoft. Meanwhile, Lingding Technology also wanted to integrate their original edge computing solution with Azure IoT Edge, to greatly reduce the real-time response problem caused by transmission latency on cloud, to further improve bandwidth utilization and save significant costs on cloud services.
Lingding Technology expected this partnership to leverage Microsoft Azure IoT Edge services to open up a round-way data channel between industrial devices and the Azure cloud, and to expand the new market for edge computing applications in industrial scenarios.
- Lab engineers designed the software architecture of a next-generation edge computing gateway with Azure IoT Edge for industrial IoT scenarios, and validated Azure IoT Edge compatibility and stability testing on new hardware devices, laying the technical foundation for stable operation of the SCAEdge edge computing gateway.
Why Azure IoT Edge?
Reduce IoT solution costs
Operate offline or with intermittent connectivity
Azure IoT Edge cloud analytics and custom business logic to devices so that your organization can focus on business insights instead of data management. Scale out your IoT solution by packaging your business logic into standard containers, then you can deploy those containers to any of your devices and monitor them all from the cloud.
(Azure IoT runtime logic diagram)
- With Azure IoT Edge's cloud edge extension capabilities, the lab extended AI capabilities, such as Custom Vision, to Lingding Technology's edge devices, in addition to deploying modules such as Azure SQL Edge/Storage/Azure Functions to edge devices, which allowed SCAEdge to explore application scenarios such as visual quality inspection.
Why Azure SQL Edge?
Overcome latency and bandwidth constraints
Azure SQL Edge, a robust Internet of Things (IoT) database for edge computing, combines capabilities such as data streaming and time series with built-in machine learning and graph features. Extend the industry-leading Microsoft SQL engine to edge devices for consistent performance and security across your entire data estate, from cloud to edge. Develop your applications once and deploy them anywhere across the edge, your on-premises datacenter, or Azure.
(Azure SQL deployment model)
Why Azure Custom Vision?
Customization to your scenario
Intuitive model creation
Azure Custom Vision, customize and embed state-of-the-art computer vision image analysis for specific domains with Custom Vision, part of Azure Cognitive Services. Build frictionless customer experiences, optimize manufacturing processes, accelerate digital marketing campaigns, and more. No machine learning expertise is required.
- Verified the system architecture of Lingding Technology’s next-generation edge computing gateway based on the hardware of Raspberry Pi 4B. The architecture deployed Azure IoT Edge runtime and the container image IIoT-Module of Lingding Technology edge computing software.
- Completed Lingding Technology’s technical verification of OTA upgrade for edge computing software container Image IIoT-Module.
- Tested the stability of IIoT – Module on Hilscher netPI gateway.
- Extended Al capabilities such as Custom Vision to Lingding Technology’s edge devices, adding application scenarios such as visual quality inspection to SCAEdge.
- Project Display
(Lingding Technology’s demo showcased at Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab)
The demo is displayed in the exhibition hall on the first floor of Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab (Shanghai). The demo simulates Lingding Technology’s industrial IoT gateway, an edge computing gateway that connects to numerous industrial control systems via OPCUA for data collecting, and a link to Azure IoT. Intelligent AIoT solutions were made with Power BI and machine learning. The demo is connected to the Azure IoT Hub, and the it’s stepper motor can be controlled remotely via Power Apps.
Mr. Peng Zhang, General Manager of Wuxi Lingding Technology Co. Ltd., said: " The solutions offered by the lab opened up new business opportunities and markets for Lingding, with a wide spectrum of potential applications. This, I believe, will also benefit the rapid expansion of Azure IoT ecosystem. We now have a better understanding of Azure IoT Edge, and we would like to adopt it to more industry applications in the future. We will accelerate the commercialization of our achievements gained at the lab and look forward to coming back the lab again with new ideas!"
Massive amounts of data are being generated at an unprecedented rate, leading in an explosive growth in the number and computing power of IoT computing devices. Therefore, edge computing will become indispensable in all walks of life. Armed with industry-leading edge computing technology-Azure IoT Edge, and a strong team of engineers, Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab can integrate edge computing with Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) or 5G technology to create a real-time and efficient data processing system.
Microsoft AI Co-Innovation Lab looks forward to collaborating with enterprises from all industries that are eager to explore the world of edge computing and IoT. We are more than happy to jointly promote innovation and help businesses navigate the digital age more smoothly.
IDC：China's Edge Cloud Research Report Released for the First Time - Potential in Challenges