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3G gateway simplifies remote management of equipment

20 November, 2013

The Swedish industrial communications specialist HMS Industrial Networks has launched a communication gateway that, it claims, will make it easier to configure, monitor and control industrial equipment remotely.

The Netbiter EC350 is the first in a new generation of gateways that support transmissions via 3G cellular networks, thus enhancing their performance compared to earlier GSM/GPRS systems, as well as increasing geographical coverage because the gateway can be used where 3G is the only available network. Five different 3G bands are supported, making the gateway suitable for the global market.

The gateway connects to industrial machinery via Modbus (serial or Ethernet), SNMP, EtherNet/IP or I/O, and sends data to HMS’s cloud-based Netbiter Argos server via Ethernet or a 3G network.

The device supports a “remote access” function that allows users to open up a secure connection to remote machinery and to configure or operate it from any location, using standard software applications. This function provides a secure data tunnel to the remote equipment.

HMS Netbiter EC350
HMS's new Netbiter gateway uses 3G for remote configuring and control

For example, with a Netbiter gateway connected to a PLC, it is possible to debug or program the PLC remotely using the PLC’s standard configuration software.

The new gateway is said to have about 20 times more processing power than HMS’s previous gateways, as well as an extended memory capacity, providing up to 512Mb of Flash and 1024Mb of RAM. Two separate Ethernet interfaces (WAN and LAN) ensure secure communications to field installations. A built-in GPS receiver makes the gateway suitable for fleet management applications, while an increased number of analogue and digital I/O allows signals and sensors to be connected directly to the gateway.

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