10/25/2004 - Echelon Corporation (NASDAQ: ELON) announced a major enhancement to its market-leading i.LON® 100 Internet Server that enables existing Web services software applications to monitor and control remotely located machines and automation systems. Where previously expensive, proprietary software was required for such tasks, the i.LON 100 e2 server leverages investments in existing Web services software, providing a cost-effective means of integrating data from machines and automation systems into enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), scheduling and dispatch, messaging and alerting, life-cycle management, process optimization, and other business critical applications. The result is an unprecedented ability to integrate automation and control data into business intelligence applications, without having to implement complex and expensive custom software applications.
This announcement is one of three announcements (see separate press releases) being made today in advance of this week's LonWorld 2004 Conference taking place in Shanghai, China. Collectively these announcements represent an important step forward in the continuing evolution of the LonWorks® platform, which provides the most advanced and complete networking infrastructure for everyday devices.
"The i.LON 100 e2 allows companies to tie real-time data to their business management systems. For instance, a municipal water utility can significantly lower operating costs by linking water usage data directly to its ERP system to better forecast chemical reorders and schedule maintenance downtimes based on equipment run-times," said Michael Tennefoss, Echelon's vice president of marketing. "Historically, the utility would have to commission an expensive, custom software development project, resulting in difficult-to-maintain, proprietary code that had no other use. Our new 'e2' server makes the usage data immediately available. We believe that the cost savings, productivity enhancements, and efficiency gains will be profound."
The Web services model – in which previously standalone enterprise systems can exchange information and manage data regardless of the operating system or programming language – has been strongly embraced by Microsoft, IBM, BEA, Oracle, SAP, and hundreds of other software vendors. Used in conjunction with the i.LON 100 e2 server, Web services enabled ERP, CRM, scheduling and dispatch, and numerous other business applications can access data from machines and automation systems regardless of the location, operating system, platform, or programming language of the software application.
Just as Web services allow enterprise applications to work together, the i.LON 100 e2 server allows machines and automation systems from different vendors to interoperate. Additionally, the i.LON 100 e2 server includes built-in support for any LonWorks device network through either a twisted pair or power line interface. The LonWorks platform is the basis for a wide variety of building, industrial, transportation, utility, and home automation applications. Over 40 million LonWorks based devices made by thousands of manufacturers are already in operation, and the LonWorks interface provides tremendous flexibility in the selection of compatible devices.
The i.LON 100 e2 server includes interfaces for a wide variety of discrete sensors, impulse meters, load controls, legacy technologies, and others. For example, M-Bus compatible gas, water, electricity, and process meters, commonly found in Europe, can be monitored by the i.LON 100 e2 server.
A built-in universal translator converts between the many supported interface formats for seamless handling, manipulation, and processing. The server also includes a suite of powerful software applications, including data logging, alarm monitoring, scheduling, and e-mail generation. An integral Web server and prodigious Flash memory storage, serves password-protected Web pages that provide a simple means with which to visualize the current state of the i.LON 100 e2 server, as well as the status of its many control points and data ports. An Ethernet port, GSM (Global System for Mobile communications) and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) wireless modem interfaces, and optional internal V.90 telephone modem provide a wide range of communication options.
"We are truly harmonizing the world of control with the world of information using off-the-shelf products," said Tennefoss. "The i.LON 100 e2 server is the intersection of the open, interoperable LonWorks networking standard for machines and automation systems, and the universal Web services platform for interconnecting enterprise software applications. Our new server cost-effectively, reliably, and seamlessly delivers actionable business intelligence, enabling the creation of powerful, new business and control solutions that cut across industries and borders."
Echelon's i.LON 100 e2 Internet Server is available today. For users of its predecessor i.LON 100 Internet Server, an upgrade can be purchased and downloaded into existing servers.
About the LonWorld 2004 Exhibition and Conference
Echelon and LonMark International are co-organizers of LonWorld 2004. The LonWorld event is the world’s leading annual forum for the LonWorks industry, allowing hardware and software manufacturers, specifiers, integrators, value added resellers, consulting and design engineers, distributors, facility managers, energy managers and executives, and buyers of "smart" products to see and learn firsthand about new products, applications, and technological advances in networking everyday devices. More information can be found at http://www.lonworldexpo.com.
About Echelon Corporation
Echelon Corporation (NASDAQ: ELON) is the world leader in networking machines and everyday devices. The company offers a comprehensive line of hardware and software products for automating building, consumer, industrial, transportation, and utility products using LonWorks networks, an international, cross-industry, open standard for interoperable device networks.
Echelon is based in San Jose, California with international offices in China, France, Germany, Italy, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, The Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. Further information can be found at http://www.echelon.com.
Echelon, LonWorks, LonMark, LNS®, i.LON, and the Echelon logo are trademarks of Echelon Corporation registered in the United States and other countries.
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