Industrial Importance of Ethernet Switches

Industrial Importance of Ethernet Switches

Enterprise Networking Mag | Tuesday, August 02, 2022

Ethernet switches are now frequently utilized in tough rail, marine, industrial, and military contexts and have previously solely got employed in IT environments.

Fremont, CA: Without a doubt, connected field systems are becoming more and more valuable across industries, whether one calls it the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) or just industrial networking. The Ethernet switch is one of the major elements supporting this communication. These switches are now frequently utilized in tough rail, marine, industrial, and military contexts, previously solely employed in IT environments.

As per a study, by 2023, there will likely be somewhere in the neighborhood of 25 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices worldwide. However, most gadgets won't be home automation systems for lighting or security. The majority will get utilized for processing and sharing field-level performance and diagnostic data among important industrial systems connected by private networks or for sharing picture data between security and military equipment.

The speed, security, and availability of network connections are critical in these contexts. Because they can quickly relay data between linked devices and larger networks in a way that can be physically and virtually secured, managed Ethernet switches are a key component of contemporary industrial network systems.

Like other embedded computing components, Ethernet switches have different specifications depending on the sector and application.

Railway switches

Ethernet switches have various uses in the rail sector. They might be necessary to handle trackside data transmission or transfer data from networked sensors, cameras, or accelerometers on the train itself. Onboard Ethernet switches get frequently used to connect passengers to the internet.

Military switches

A common task for military embedded systems is collecting and processing data from image and video streams on an army vehicle. Although this data gets processed in the field, a command center must still receive it. This must be done swiftly, effectively, and securely to enable prompt decision-making and coordination of an appropriate reaction.

Military and defense Ethernet switches should contain native features to maximize network data protection because security is of the utmost significance. For example, to prevent electromagnetic (EM) spying, these include port-level authentication, mirroring to facilitate traffic monitoring, and mixed media or fiberoptic ports.

Marine switches

Ethernet switches in maritime environments must be sufficiently ingress protected to IP67 or higher and function properly in chilly conditions for extended periods. If the Ethernet switch handles data from sonar or radar systems, it should preferably be able to accommodate many data channels in terms of network capability.

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