The winners of the 2020 LEAP Awards (Leadership in Engineering Achievement Program) were announced yesterday in a digital ceremony, with products across 12 categories. Critical to LEAP’s success is the involvement of the engineering community. No one at WTWH Media selected the winners. Instead, our editorial team did the arduous work of assembling a top-notch independent judging panel, comprised of a cross-section of OEM design engineers and academics — 14 professionals in total. This judging team was solely responsible for the final results.
In the Switches & sensors category, the winning submissions for this year are:
ALTA Advanced Edge Gateway
The judges commented: “Task-oriented, sensor centric approach provides an innovative product making it accessible to small business and price-sensitive applications. Ease of deployment rather than conformity to large complex system constraints is a welcomed approach.” Congratulations!
Monnit’s ALTA Advanced Edge Gateway is a sensor-to-cloud solution that securely delivers IoT data to mainstream cloud providers, such as Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Watson IoT, and custom MQTTS servers. The Ethernet-based device enables rapid deployment of Monnit’s low-cost wireless sensors and direct transmission of sensor data to the cloud — without integrating third-party software or developing the necessary software in-house.
The Edge Gateway features integrated iMonnit Express software for sensor pairing, parameterization (i.e., check-ins and measurement thresholds), visualization, and MQTT broker(s) designation. The Ethernet-based gateway is customizable for MQTT topics and message formats; integrated macros permit users to specify data configuration, e.g., XML or JSON file format.
The Internet of Things generates billions of data points, inundating users daily with data. Edge Gateway helps users cope by decentralizing data processing, bringing it closer to data-generating “things” that are supporting edge computing. This decentralization also allows for spontaneous analytics, instant metrics-based action, and support for enhanced situation-based applications.
And, the Edge Gateway allows users to swiftly address agility, security, and productivity concerns. Experienced cloud users can unbox the device, pair with Monnit Wireless Sensors, and deliver authenticated sensor data to the cloud within an hour. Rather than reactively addressing data integrity and security, the Edge Gateway provides end-to-end data authentication. The device proactively “fingerprints” Monnit sensor data via cryptographic validation stamp. Even if this data is transmitted across unsecured networks or is stored for later use, its integrity and point of origin are verifiable. When authenticated data arrives at the data consumer, it’s in a human-readable format. For additional flexibility and streamlined data management, the gateway features integrated macros for customizing data presentation, e.g., JSON or XML, to suit the point of use.
Monnit’s Edge Gateway supports commercial and enterprise applications by aggregating asset, environmental, and process data and transmitting it to any mainstream cloud provider or generic MQTT broker(s). Designed with edge processing capabilities in mind, the gateway lends itself well to machine learning applications.
A prime example of the Edge Gateway supporting behavioral modeling and machine learning is an upcoming building information modeling project. A firm is developing a model of an existing building that monitors central air system performance under varying external temperatures and other conditions. Monnit sensors will be deployed, with the Edge Gateway aggregating and pushing data to the cloud. The data will shape a model for use with a control algorithm that proactively tailors HVAC power draw to accommodate occupied or unoccupied states. The system will reduce power draw at the end of the business day and automatically readjust before the next business day begins. Moreover, as the day progresses, the HVAC system will intelligently adjust based on factors such as outside temperature, anticipated cloud cover, and the sun’s position in the sky. The system will even dynamically adjust start-up times based on the outside temperature.
Microchip Technology Inc.
Microchip Switchtec PAX Advanced Fabric Gen 4 PCIe Switches
To support cloud, data center, and hyperscale computing for advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), Microchip Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MCHP) today released to production its Switchtec PAX Advanced Fabric Gen 4 PCIe switch family, enabling complex fabric topologies with greater scalability, lower latency, and higher performance than traditional Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) switches.
Microchip’s Switchtec PAX PCIe family of switches provides a turnkey fabric solution and reduces time-to-market for systems requiring multi-host sharing of Single Root I/O Virtualization (SR-IOV) Non-Volatile Memory (NVMe) Solid State Drives (SSDs), Graphics Processing Units (GPUs), and other PCIe endpoints.
The Switchtec PAX devices are the industry’s lowest-power Gen 4 PCIe switches, significantly reducing total system power consumption. The Switchtec PAX family of switches is available in the following variants: 100-lane, 84-lane, 68-lane, 52-lane, 36-lane, and 28-lane. Other PAX family of switches features include:
• Advanced error containment
• Comprehensive diagnostics and debug capabilities
• Wide breadth of I/O interfaces
• Integrated MIPS processor
• Secure boot to prevent the execution of unauthorized firmware through public key cryptography.
Applications include GPU workstations, composable General Purpose GPUs (GP-GPU) fabrics, scalable multi-host systems, SR-IOV-enabled JBOFs, disaggregated systems, and rack-scale architectures.
FUTEK Advanced Sensor Technology, Inc.
Nano Force Sensor
The NANO force sensor features M1 threaded double-sided mounting provisions and unique thru-hole design allowing for flexible slide on, weld-on over the tube, wire, or shaft integration options. Nano sensors multi-element, side load compensated, 1000 Ohm full-bridge instrumentation, is encased with laser-welded construction with patent-pending non-active interconnect packaging providing environmental protection. It allows for high accuracy in 5lb and 10lb capacities with ultra-low deflection, and high natural frequency response up to 98KHz.
For the list of winners in all categories click here.