Data Integrity from Sensor (and Control) Networks

EngAnalysis takes data integrity as seriously as the structures and machines we measure. 

Mitch Gayner takes us through just some of the ways in which we ensure that you and nobody else gets your data when and how you should

What is Data integrity?

Data integrity refers to the accuracy and consistency (validity) of data over its lifecycle. Compromised data, after all, is of little use to enterprises, not to mention the dangers presented by sensitive data loss. For this reason, maintaining data integrity is a core focus of many enterprise security solutions. (ref: Digital Guardian)

How does EngAnalysis ensure Data Integrity?

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Network Security: EngAnalysis use private (LTE, WAN, etc) networks to move data from remote monitoring locations to our computing infrastructure. None of our customers' data travels over the internet unless it is encrypted. This separation from the internet means our engineering team can focus more on other security measures, up-time and functionality.

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Deployment Team: EngAnalysis has a track record of deploying quality remote monitoring installations at light speed. We are able to show customers their data in real-time at the moment sensors are connected. This requires all of our available disciplines (electrical, mechanical, software) to be part of the commissioning process. This is a great way to build trust in our people, network, computing infrastructure and ability to deliver results.

Backups: They have to be done! All data captured into our computing infrastructure is backed up daily. We will not leave our customers' data vulnerable to a single point of failure. We have monitoring on our remote backups because the engineering team is definitely* not awake at 2am.

*Unless we are installing a system onsite that is.

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Software: Software engineering team is always evaluating programming practices and environments that are mature & proven. The right mix between new and old is essential. Do not fall for the "new is always better" mantra played by some in the technology industry. #battlehardend

Remote Locations: Monitoring (and control!) systems in remote locations. Below is a system we have implemented in Northern Australia that is currently moving ~2700 data points per second across a 12 kilometer stretch of land. All data is transferred and secured in Sydney. Current trajectory for this project is beyond ~10000 data points per second. All data is available in real-time.

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EngAnalysis turns 4 Years Old!

John Vazey, founder and Managing Director rocking the EngAnalysis cycle jersey

John Vazey, founder and Managing Director rocking the EngAnalysis cycle jersey

EngAnalysis has turned four years old!

We are still increasing our capability and reducing the cost of measurement and monitoring with over 670 sensors currently deployed on excavators, bridges, tunnels, trains, tracks, ships, buildings and pipelines and all streaming data through analysis to our real-time dashboards.

We have invested in excess of $700,000 in data acquisition and sensors and are increasing our internal software development for data gathering, database management, visualisation and analysis. Recent advancements in both laser based strain sensors and analysis tools are keeping our teams motivated and challenged.

Thanks to the efforts of Corey, John, Henry, Hamish, Ian, Simone, Carlos, Mick and Matthew. Thanks also to Mitchell Gayner and the GTS team!

Design validation of railing system

EngAnalysis provided design guidance, validation and test requirements for safety systems on manual turf harvesters.

The problem

Manual stacking turf harvesters lack modern safety systems, this has resulted in at least one known fatality and numerous injuries. Automated stacking harvesters are becoming the norm, but many farmers still use manual stackers regularly in certain situations. SafeWork NSW ruled that harvesters must meet certain guidelines in order to be used safely, however this guidance lacked specificity in how to implement changes that would lead to compliance. OEM suppliers showed little interest in providing solutions.

The solution

Our team worked closely with a local grower and the peak growers bodies who had proactively developed a design they felt was appropriate.

EngAnalysis reviewed the Coroner’s reports, SafeWork NSW guidance, Australian standards and the growers design modifications. We provided design generic and detail guidance, and testing procedures, pass/fail criteria and operational guidance to ensure individual farmers could implement design modifications cost effectively and safely. Our engineers tested the original design and provided design rectification guidance where required. We also attended a growers open day to provide individual guidance where required.

Read more here

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Crack growth monitoring brings certainty to fracture mechanics in structures

The team have developed a monitoring system and methodology for real-time fatigue crack growth, for use on machinery and structures. Access to growth rate data eliminates the uncertainty of the analysis of fatigue crack growth in machinery or structures and can drive decisions on operational efficiency, business risk, maintenance planning and safety. Measurements are constantly uploaded to EngAnalysis secure web portal and enabled with automated analysis, alerts and data visualisation, allowing site maintenance engineers and managers to observe and respond to the growth of critical cracks in real-time.

The system is:

  • Rugged and designed for a harsh operational environment, to monitor cracks where frequent visual observations are not feasible, or if cracking needs to be monitored while the repair is planned.

  • Customisable to measure/integrate and report other physical parameters or operational data that may be affecting the rate of damage, such as strain, vibration, displacement, temperature and even images/video with the data used for design or process improvements to prevent reoccurrence of the failure.

Example of crack growth real-time data visualisation

Example of crack growth real-time data visualisation

SydneyWater OzWater Poster

At OzWater this week Sydney Water presented the Tunnel structural health monitoring system that EngAnalysis developed, deployed and maintain with the SydneyWater team for the Pressure Tunnel pipeline a critical asset in the supply of water to Sydney. 

This system comprises of over 220 HBM fiber bragg optical strain gauges as well as pressure and temperature sensors, all reporting into multiple bespoke real-time data analytics portals for Sydney Water and their stakeholder.

EngAnalysis pre-assembled much of the system allowing for a fully installed in the Pressure Tunnel during 4 days of access. (pdf version)

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Just in case you are wondering what (some) of the team look like after 4 very long days in a pipe installing sensors….

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