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The smart buyer's guide for efficient industrial computers

Ever since the advent of computers, inventors have been designing new platforms for unusual use cases. For industries that require high-end server systems for high performance and exceptional reliability, specialised industrial computers are usually required.
For example, industries such as oil and gas, mining, power distribution and communications require more than lightweight computing for process control and data acquisition.

According to a source, IBM released the 5531 Industrial Computer in 1984, arguably the first industrial PC. The IBM 7531, an industrial version of the IBM AT PC was released 21 May 1985. Also in 1985, Industrial Computer Source first offered the 6531 Industrial Computer. This was a proprietary 4U rack mount industrial computer based on a clone IBM PC motherboard.

Thereafter, more sophisticated and advanced types of industrial computers have been manufactured to serve high-end functions. Due to their clear superiority in challenging industrial environments, it’s very important to choose rugged industrial computers when it’s time to upgrade your company’s industrial server equipment.

Here are top features to look out for when buying new sets of industrial computers for your company.

Mark of genuineness

To ensure that the industrial computers you intend to buy are of high quality, you must check to see if they have what is called the mark of genuineness. Essentially they must be IP65 certified to show that they’re totally protected from dust ingress and low pressure water jets from any direction. Any industrial computer with this international standard IP protection guarantees durability due to its enhanced environmental protections.

Robust and customisable controls and features

Generally, an effective industrial computer should have durability features such as the ability to withstand very high or low temperatures, high intensity vibration and or shock, high levels of dust and dirt and salt fog. In addition, industrial computers must be customisable to allow for higher data capacities. They should come equipped with several expansion slots and ports for memory upgrade as well as storage capacity expansion.

Anti-shock casing

Computers that are meant to be used in harsh industrial environments have to be rugged to serve their functions effectively. Part of what makes such kinds of computers rugged is the durability of casing used. Ideally, the casing should be able to adequately resist both shock and vibration. Otherwise it won’t be strong enough to withstand the pressures that characterise heavily industrialized environments.

Fanless ventilation

There’s no doubt that high temperature is one of the most common causes of industrial computer breakdowns. In order to prevent the data loss that’s associated with temperature-related breakdowns, making sure that computer systems are properly ventilated is of the highest priority. One innovative solution that industrial computers use for ventilation is fanless cooling systems. While traditional fan-based cooling systems are prone to mechanical failures, fanless cooling systems are virtually unbreakable. Modern fanless computers are built to support the latest heat-sensitive Intel core processors, ensuring that they are always operating in a safer temperature range.

Other important features to consider when shopping for an industrial computer system are a high-grade power supply, watchdog timer, enhanced filtering and gasketing, and controlled access technologies. While your application might not require all of these features, consider the value in buying an overbuilt industrial computer system. Often the cost of having your computer system down for just one day can far exceed the extra money you would spend to buy a system that will be reliable for years to come. When you consider that your industrial computer system is one of the cornerstones of your business’s success, it become clear that investing in the best is obvious choice.

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