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Josh Eastburn

After 12 years as an automation engineer working in the semiconductor, petrochemical, food and beverage, and life sciences industries, Josh Eastburn works with the engineers at Opto 22 to understand the needs of tomorrow's customers.
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Recent Posts

Easy EaaS: Shumaker Industries/Martins Electrical Service

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Feb 8, 2021 8:48:33 AM

groov RIO enables affordable equipment-as-a-service designs that are easy to deploy

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Equipment-as-a-service (EaaS) involves renting out or providing access to equipment and collecting payment periodically, rather than selling the equipment outright. This payment model enables end users to pay for costly or infrequently used equipment as an ongoing operating expense, which can open new markets for machine builders. 

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Topics: OEM, Node-RED, groov RIO, EaaS

Modern Wastewater: Waterford DPW

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Feb 1, 2021 11:22:49 AM

One community makes the leap into MQTT-based utility management

Formally organized in 1834, Waterford Township is located geographically in the center of Oakland County, Michigan, USA, and is home to over 72,000 residents. It is known regionally for its 34 lakes, from which it earns its name.

In the public utilities industry, however, Waterford is known for its leadership and persistent innovation in water/wastewater management. The Department of Public Works has been featured previously in an Opto 22 case study, and a generation later, DPW is working on another landmark project.

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Topics: Case studies, Water & wastewater, MQTT, groov EPIC, Ignition, digital transformation

Easy OEE: Enginuity

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Jan 12, 2021 12:50:59 PM

OptoPartner Enginuity shows us how to quickly retrofit a CNC with groov RIO

In a time when automation is driven by increasing connectivity, there is still plenty of everyday equipment that is simply not designed to talk to much of anything. 

This equipment might be full of juicy data—how well it’s working, how much energy it’s using, how often it’s put to work—and leveraging that data to build an OEE or predictive maintenance program is often an untapped source of potential savings.

But what are your options for integrating this kind of equipment? Well, until recently they probably didn’t look very good.

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Topics: Node-RED, OptoPartner, groov RIO, CNC, OEE

Smart Food: Mama Sita's/OptoTech

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Jan 4, 2021 2:03:07 PM

Opto 22 talks connected manufacturing in the food industry.

Way back when face-to-face interviews were a thing, I had the opportunity to sit down with Pons Tugonon to talk about the development of connected food manufacturing. Pons leads OptoTech (now P&E Automation), a long-time international system integrator and distributor for Opto 22, and his work with the Mama Sita’s brand (Marigold Manufacturing Corporation) of authentic Filipino food products shows off the potential for industrial edge computing in manufacturing.

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Topics: Case studies, Videos, Food & beverage, groov EPIC

Growing the Future: MicroClimates and groov RIO

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Dec 9, 2020 7:43:18 AM

Industrial edge computing enables cutting-edge indoor agricultural control and business intelligence.

Indoor agriculture is more than just greenhouses now, and for good reason. As populations grow and food demand increases, supply chains become stressed. By moving agriculture indoors, food production can happen even in the middle of dense towns and cities where many food products are ultimately bound. And unlike Mother Nature, indoor environments can be controlled for consistent, efficient, year-round production.

But as you know, not all automation is alike. Traditional control systems designed for large-scale environments aren’t well-suited to the skillset or budget of many small, indoor grow operations, but on the other hand, more affordable solutions lack centralized integration. Solutions big and small also fail to provide the security, storage, and communication features that could support useful data collection for developing business intelligence (BI).

So when MicroClimates set out to design a scalable automation and BI solution to support the growing indoor ag industry, "we went out to look for the best of breed hardware to put our software onto and that's why we ended up with groov RIO", says Loren West, MicroClimates’s CTO.

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Topics: edge computing, groov RIO, HVAC, indoor agriculture

Mini case study: Dignified Motors makes driving accessible with groov EPIC

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Nov 11, 2020 8:00:00 AM

Innovative engineer turns to Opto 22 to power an EPIC Chevy Silverado lift system

Download case study pdf

What do you do if you own a beautiful truck but one day find yourself a wheelchair user? Chances are you’ve never considered that possibility, but answering that kind of question is what Dave Aitchison of Dignified Motors does every day.

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Topics: groov EPIC, Veteran's Day

groov RIO mini case studies

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Aug 10, 2020 9:48:32 AM

See what people are up to with Opto 22’s new edge I/O module.

groov RIO has been available for a few months, and people are already surprising us with how they’re putting it to work. Here are a few of the amazing examples we’ve seen from our early adopters.

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Topics: Case studies, system integrator, groov RIO

MQTT: Bringing it all together

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Jul 29, 2020 8:45:29 AM

Building industrial MQTT networks at scale with Opto 22 groov devices.

If you've followed this series since the beginning, you should have a good idea of how to set up your groov EPIC or groov RIO for MQTT communication. You also understand the importance of Sparkplug B in building MQTT systems and designing industrial-strength IoT networks.

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Topics: MQTT, groov EPIC, Sparkplug, Ignition, MQTT implementation, groov RIO

MQTT: Mission-critical fault tolerance

Posted by Josh Eastburn on Jun 16, 2020 9:01:50 AM

Our MQTT series continues with a deep dive into groov EPIC’s (and now groov RIO’s) features for high-reliability MQTT networks.

At its heart, MQTT was designed for unreliable networks. Back in the ’90s, ConocoPhillips (now Phillips 66) was looking for a way to improve telemetry reporting over its low-bandwidth dial-up and costly VSAT (small satellite dish) SCADA network. IBM partnered with system integrator Arcom Control Systems (now Cirrus Link Solutions) to develop a minimalist communication protocol that could gracefully handle intermittent network outages and high latency among many distributed devices over TCP/IP. 

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Topics: Node-RED, MQTT, Ignition Edge, groov EPIC, groov Manage, Sparkplug, MQTT implementation, groov RIO

Go further with groov EPIC 2.0

Posted by Josh Eastburn on May 5, 2020 4:03:17 PM

With the latest firmware update, groov EPIC gets I/O for the IIoT and more

Out this week, groov EPIC firmware version 2.0 is a milestone for the platform, and there are more than a few reasons to consider updating. Here’s an overview of what’s included.

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Topics: Updates, PAC Control, IIoT, Node-RED, MQTT, Codesys, groov EPIC, groov RIO

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