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Connectors with sensors bring analogue machines to the Cloud

Small sensor-connector gets digital revolution rolling
Dr. Jan Regtmeier
Dr. Jan Regtmeier
Director Product Management, Market, HARTING IT Software Development

If you were to fly a drone through German manufacturing companies, the experience would be akin to a history lesson in plant engineering. You would encounter "aged" production machines which have been reliably and autonomously delivering their production output for years without any sensors whatsoever. In addition, you’d discover newer machines which feed production data in real time to MES systems and the Cloud and thereby provide management with valuable key indicators. Companies looking to completely digitise their manufacturing in order to fully exploit the benefits of IIoT are confronted with the question of how to usher all of their production into the digital age?

Connectors with sensors bring analogue machines to the Cloud

Start small – think big

In order to digitally connect physical units at all, an intelligent sensor system is required in the first place. HARTING’s new sensor connectors lay the foundation for Industry 4.0 infrastructure in the manufacturing environment. The new Han-Smart® connector generation simultaneously adds computing power to the mix and is enhanced by wireless sensors. This variant is particularly advantageous for big retrofit challenges. With digitisation directly on the machine, a small but important step has been taken to transfer production in the direction of the Smart Factory.

Electromechanical and IIoT connectivity meld into one

Real-time data which is obtained offer numerous opportunities. On the one hand, they help support decisions that in turn enable quick responses to new requirements during live operation, e.g. by the customer. Depending on the application, a decision can even be made on the production equipment on site, without involving any further systems. Electromechanical connections are steadily replaced by IIoT connectivity. As a result, production operations are re-orienting themselves towards the future in an incremental manner.

IIoT connectivity and the electromechanical connectivity of connectors will merge even further

Dr. Jan Regtmeier, Director Product Management, HARTING IT Software Development

Everything in the (digital) stream

Smart sensors read data that was previously unobtainable because there was simply no interface. These data can now be digitised via the MICA® and transmitted to the Cloud. As part of predictive maintenance, they are "pushed" to maintenance technicians on mobile devices or used for energy control and management. The more digital manufacturing data is further processed, analysed and used as a basis for decision-making, the more a company benefits from the advantages of Industry 4.0.


  • Incremental, clear transformation from tangible to physical and digital networking
  • Customer-friendly system solutions based on the Plug & Work principle


For future decision-makers of Production 4.0

  • Incremental transfer of production into an Industry 4.0 infrastructure with readily visible effects
  • High-performance sensor-connector for reading machine data
  • MICA® for relaying data to the Cloud


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