What is Node-RED and what can I do with it?

Node-RED is a web based, open-source visual programming tool invented by IBM and used by Industrial Players such as Siemens, Fujitsu, AT&T and of course Phoenix Contact. Programs are represented as Flows in which data flows via Wires between operations, the so-called Nodes. Nodes can collect, convert and transfer data through various protocols from different machines to each other. Each individual date is abstracted as an Event. It is possible to perform simple transformations on data such as Map, Filter, Reduce and Collect.

Node-RED features a huge collection of pre-installed protocol Nodes like TCP, UDP and many more as well as an enthusiastic community that continues to support well over 3000 available Packages with even more Nodes.

Learn how to utilize Node-RED for your IIoT-Use-Cases in the next few Lessons.

Installing Node-RED on hardware

Node-RED can be installed on any PC (Mac, Windows, Linux), so it is possible to perform feasibility studies without incurring costs (Proficloud.io is free, Time Series Data Service offers 20 metrics for free).

Phoenix Contact offers a PLCnext Industrial Edge Computer, with Node-RED preinstalled.


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