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ThunderCloud Alliance Aims at World Market

ThunderCloud Alliance Aims at World Market

Small and medium-sized companies cooperate in Industrial IoT and M2M venture

ThunderCloud Alliance (関西積乱雲プロジェクト) was launched on 2013 December to showcase each company’s products and the technologies for cloud computing and the IoT (Internet of Things).

Cogent Real-Time Systems is one of the key companies for the ThunderCloud Alliance, offering real-time data connectivity middleware to communicate between devices (M2M) and remote monitoring, along with six other companies in the Kansai area. There are a total of nine companies are participating in the ThounderCloud alliance project at present.

Each company is contributing from its own specialized field. TOA Musendenki Co., Ltd is in charge of communication and various sensor devices. BellChild Co., Ltd is responsible for cloud servers. Kobata Gauge Manufacturing provides various sensors. Haneron Corporation offers remote monitoring equipment. NiC is responsible for industrial networks. Nissin Systems Co., Ltd. is in charge of control systems and embedded software. Puerto Co., Ltd develops industrial protocols, and provides expertise in OPC UA. Japan Direx Corporation does real-time network intelligence analysis.

All members get together regularly each month to exchange information and share each companys’ technologies, new ideas, and market trends. They collaborate to develop, innovate, and test new systems.

Recently they have been working together to develop a system which collects information from various sensors and sends their data to the cloud by highly secure wired and wireless transmission technology.

“This organization welcomes any company that wants to collaborate on new technology. Each company can bring in their own special skills or knowledge with no pressure.” Mr. Kobata, President of Kobata Gauge Manufacturing, emphasizes.

“Specifically, we have been focusing our development on communication between various sensors and gateway devices, simultaneous data transmission, and highly secure systems,” said Mr. Fujita, President of BellChild. “As a result, we completed a secure micro cloud system named ‘iBRESS’ on June 15, 2015 which leverages IoT technology.”

“Currently, iBRESS is installed in the monitoring systems of small hydroelectric power generators using agricultural water, and it is also used by freshwater plants on remote islands,” he said. “We are beginning to see good results, and it has been getting a good reviews from users.”

“This project’s success demonstrates that when small and medium-sized enterprises collaborate together it enhances the security of cloud systems for remote monitoring,” said Mr. Emi, President of TOA Musendenki. “Now a number of major companies are paying attention to this secure technology for cloud-based remote monitoring products. In addition, ThunderCloud Alliance members are motivated to develop next-generation systems in the future.”

“We would also like to cooperate with sales departments among the participating companies to be able to aim at even the global market,” said Mr. Kobata, expressing his enthusiasm for the potential applications of the technology.

We will continue to monitor the activities of the ThunderCloud Alliance on an ongoing basis, and look forward to seeing this kind of collaborative movement among different companies in other areas and regions.

Published by Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun (日刊工業新聞社) on January 5th