Microsoft Azure

Azure IoT Reference Architecture Guide

How to architect your industrial IoT platform with Microsoft Azure

At Bright Wolf we believe the answer to “Build or Buy?” is to leverage proven, best of breed software components and services for industrial IoT platform infrastructure and functionality, including security, privacy, and reliability – and innovate where you can differentiate your offerings or address unique enterprise requirements and goals. To put it simply – don’t reinvent the wheel, but don’t settle for the same commodity system as your competitors unless you want the same commodity results.  

Bright Wolf helps enterprises who rely on Microsoft Azure design and build the most flexible and cost-effective Azure IoT system architecture and data management solution. In addition to Azure industrial IoT solution development and digital strategy consulting we make available customizable industrial IoT platform accelerators to simplify edge connectivity and application development. Set up a free initial consultation to learn about best practices and how to build a sustainable connected solution for your organization.

Data collection

Our developers will show you how to design a solution for mixed fleets of legacy and new equipment using a variety of data collection and device management scenarios. There are many ways to collect IoT data from devices in the field or facility. For example, depending on existing device capabilities, options include HTTPS transactions for hardware lacking MQTT or AMQP support that cannot be updated, connecting in parallel with modern equipment communicating directly with Azure IoT Hub as the cloud gateway.

Azure IoT Data Collection

Data transformation & processing

Handling the volume, velocity, and variety of data sent to the cloud requires service orchestration for serialization, storage, and real-time message processing with services such as Azure Stream Analytics. Sophisticated data management is critical for realizing the potential of your solution, including data cleaning, routing to multiple systems, and enabling raw data backups that can be replayed for simulated behavior and analysis. 

Analytics & applications

After ingestion and initial processing, proper data management is critical for deriving insights and driving actions across your organization – as well as keeping operational costs in line with the value produced. Through Azure API Management and Active Directory integration, secure access can be provided across enterprise teams, and automated workflows can be joined with enterprise systems and applications such as CRM, ERP, and other business systems, including Power BI and other visualization tools and dashboards.

Azure IoT reference architecture

Bright Wolf developers will help you bring it all together with Azure reference architecture guides and implementation support. Our goal is to enable your team every step of the way for application design and delivery – or we can build and operate the system for you depending on your needs as they change over time. 

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Azure IoT Services Tutorial

Azure provides secure and scalable infrastructure components for building a flexible industrial IoT platform designed for your unique enterprise vision, goals, and constraints. Bright Wolf experts will guide your team every step of the way on reference architecture best practices and custom development opportunities to gain a competitive advantage. 

Edge software

  • Azure IoT Hub SDK – provides connectivity to Azure IoT Hub for new and updatable devices.
  • Azure IoT Edge – enables custom logic and analytics to run locally on edge devices, and IoT Hub communication.
  • Azure Sphere – an application platform with built-in communication and security features.
  • Custom options – for legacy devices that cannot be updated or lack required resources, we’ll help you integrate these machines into your overall application.

IoT data collection 

  • Azure IoT Hub – enables secure, 2-way communication and management between cloud IoT applications and devices which support MQTT or AMQP protocols. 
  • Event Hub – receives data from ‘big data’ sources and devices not enabled for IoT Hub connectivity.
  • Azure Functions – receives data from legacy devices via HTTPS
  • Support for new & legacy equipment – we’ll show you how to design a solution for mixed fleets and capabilities.   

Data transformation & processing

  • Azure Service Bus & Queue Storage – data serialization and storage. 
  • Azure Functions – flexible serverless development for processing and transforming of ingested device data in the cloud.
  • Azure Streaming Analytics – a real-time analytics pipeline for edge and cloud.

Data storage

  • Azure Blob Storage – for unprocessed and cold path data, including images, videos, and large binary files. 
  • Azure Cosmos DB – a fast and flexible NoSQL database.
  • Azure SQL – a scalable relational Azure database.
  • Legacy on-premise support – use Hybrid Connections to securely store IoT data in existing databases. 

Analytics & applications

  • Azure Machine Learning & AI – create continuous learning loops for systems that improve over time.
  • Azure Logic Apps, Active Directory & API Management – create business processes, automate workflows, and securely access data and services.
  • Custom development – for serverless, container-based, or traditional stacks using Azure Functions, Kubernetes Service, Container Registry, and VMs.

Business integration & reporting

  • Power BI – bring data from multiple sources into powerful, interactive visualizations and rapid reporting for teams across your organization. 
  • Azure Time Series Insights – for real-time & interactive analysis of time series data.
  • Azure Digital Twins – virtually model relationships between people, places, and devices to gain insights and optimize business environments.

Your partner for Industrial Azure IoT success

With our Azure and connected product system development experience, your organization will increase productivity and create business value faster on secure and scalable IoT infrastructure and applications at the edge and in the cloud.

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