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MXIE: On-premises OT Edge explained


In the wake of growing competition, enterprises are choosing to digitalize operations to boost productivity, efficiency, and agility. The first step is to gain access to operational technology (OT) which monitors and controls their physical processes, systems, devices, and industrial equipment. To do that they need to connect their assets. 

With the introduction of the Digital Automation Cloud (DAC) end-to-end platform, Nokia provided a way for them to do that. Offered 'as a service', enterprise customers can use 4G/LTE, 5G as well as Wi-Fi and benefit from local edge computing capabilities, compelling applications, and industrial user equipment to digitalize operations in the most reliable way. 5G will allow enterprises to implement more advanced Industry 4.0 capabilities.  As a result, analyst firm Gartner estimates by 2029 almost 15 billion IoT devices will be connected to the enterprise infrastructure. 

Growing demand for on-premises processing

More devices mean more data processed in the cloud. To leverage advanced use cases, such as Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR), Autonomous Haulage Systems (AHS) and zero-fault manufacturing more data must be processed in real time. If it needs to travel just a few hundred kilometers to the local cloud it creates delays of several milliseconds that cannot be tolerated.

For this reason, Gartner estimates that by 2025, 75 percent of enterprise data will be processed on-premises, next to where it is generated.

Introducing the Nokia MX Industrial Edge (MXIE)

To target this growing demand, Nokia introduced the MX Industrial Edge (MXIE). Nokia MXIE is a future-ready solution that uses powerful on-premises edge cloud capabilities to allow enterprises to process data at the source in real time while retaining data sovereignty.

Using the MXIE, asset-intensive industries like mines, ports, energy utilities, warehouses, and factories can accelerate their digital transformation. Real-time data processing unlocks use cases such as autonomous operations on a grand scale, advanced predictive maintenance capabilities and more, reducing downtime and increasing productivity and efficiencies, while contributing to enterprise sustainability and safety goals.

MXIE is offered as part of the Nokia DAC, which is designed for industrial campus networks, it can be provided with the Nokia Modular Private Wireless, a fully customer owned private wireless solution serving large industrial sites and field area networks, or it can be offered as a standalone on-prem application platform without connectivity. 

MXIE was launched in an edge-as-a-Service model, covering the software platform and applications.

Nokia announced in February 2023 that MXIE will be offered on a full subscription basis extending the as-a-service model to the MXIE hardware. This will reduce up-front capital investments and enable more enterprises to begin their digitalization journey and benefit from the capabilities of MXIE.

High-performance, resilient, secure edge architecture enhances productivity and agility

Nokia MXIE is essential to enable high-performance computing for complex industrial application workloads. It offers extreme resilience and reliability through an end-to-end high availability architecture including a geographical redundant option for increased business continuity. MXIE delivers physical graphics processing unit (GPU) support. This enables versatile inference acceleration for business-critical use cases such as those that rely on real-time monitoring of video feeds and alerts or that provide data intelligence though the analysis of real-time OT data at the edge.

A unification platform for Industry 4.0

Recent research in an Analysys Mason Applications and edge computing for private LTE/5G networks report predicts growing interest among enterprises for implementing new private wireless Industry 4.0 use cases such as autonomous robots and augmented and virtual reality. This will, in turn, grow the enterprise application market rapidly with investments expected to be around US$6 billion in 2030.

Private 4G/LTE and 5G wireless connectivity is a vitally important use case for Nokia and a key enabler for the digital transformation of enterprises. Beyond that Nokia is expanding the private wireless ecosystem with additional applications running on MXIE that meet the digitalization demands of an array of industries.

MXIE offers ecosystem neutrality and a unification platform that allows enterprises to onboard both Nokia and third party cloud-native and virtual machine based applications and taps into existing hyperscaler and industrial cloud solutions to accelerate the digital transformation of their business.

Video analytics: Nokia Scene Analytics uses AI and machine learning to remotely monitor multiple video feeds from cameras connected to the private wireless network for many industrial use cases such as manufacturing quality control, security, port container id recognition and more. If anomalies or specified objects and situations are detected, alerts are sent to humans to investigate.  Smart Mobile Labs Edge Video Orchestrator (EVO) technology ensures that multiple video streams from any source are delivered with as little as one millisecond latency to meet the real-time requirements of mission critical use cases.

Mixed reality: Taqtile's Manifest(r) platform enables real-time delivery of work instructions to deskless team members' workpads. Leveraging mixed reality, data is overlayed on equipment, guiding maintenance staff to areas needing attention and allowing them to compare current and historical data to resolve issues quickly. This is vital for zero-fault manufacturing.

Critical Team communications: Nokia Team Comms and Nokia Group Comms enable push-to-X, voice and video for greater situational awareness. Maintenance teams can easily contact supervisors for help and first responders, and teams in remote. harsh environments can communicate with central control.

Tracking and positioning applications: Nokia High Accuracy Indoor Positioning (HAIP) use geo mapping to track assets indoors across large spaces. This can enable multiple AMRs to traverse a factory safely and efficiently, or reduce time spent searching for stock in a warehouse.

Industrial connectors. Nokia has partnered with leading industrial automation companies like PTC and Siemens to onboard their industrial connectivity software solutions to MXIE (PTC ThingWorx Kepware Edge, Siemens MindConnect Software Agent) to provide seamless connectivity of  customer operational data between assets and industrial northbound systems.

Webscale connectors provides access to hyperscaler and industrial edge cloud applications and OT data in the public cloud such as Microsoft Azure IoT Edge.

Nokia Integrated Operations Center provides a single pane of glass view to intelligently control and manage a mix of IoT and non IoT data sources, systems, applications and analytics engines to advance end-to-end operational efficiency.

Autonomous robot and vehicle capabilities: Enterprises can connect AMRs and the Nokia drone network, securely and effectively over the MXIE.

OT Security: Zscaler Private Access(tm) brings Zero Trust Security to MXIE to secure mission-critical Edge workloads, OT, and IIoT systems. Unlike VPN solutions, Zscaler Private Access(tm) minimizes the attack surface and risk of lateral threat movement by connecting users, sensors and devices only to the applications they need to do their work.

Industry 4.0 applications allow enterprises such as manufacturers, ports, mining and energy companies to access OT and leverage analytics, mixed reality and more to increase agility. By integrating these capabilities within secure high-performance private wireless networks and the industrial edge, enterprises can benefit from use cases that include widespread automation and help drive process efficiency, flexibility, sustainability and security in their operations. 

About Nokia

At Nokia, we create technology that helps the world act together.

As a B2B technology innovation leader, we are pioneering networks that sense, think and act by leveraging our work across mobile, fixed and cloud networks. In addition, we create value with intellectual property and long-term research, led by the award-winning Nokia Bell Labs.

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