Internet of Things is more than a buzzword. It’s something that is being felt in various parts of the industry today. It’s also something that when its building blocks are combined together lead to reduced cost of ownership, and better operational efficiencies. We explain how IoT can help manage work truck fleets engaged in tasks such as waste collection and street sweeping not just for better uptime – but for a whole new way to look at the revenue model!
Five components for IoT work truck solutions
Let’s take a quick look at the Internet of Things ecosystem and the building blocks of IoT. Take a simple mechanical device, add a sensing and an actuating element, then connect it to the cloud. The simple mechanical device can now tap the power of a supercomputer! That, in a sentence, is the essence of Internet of Things.
There are five important components for an effective IoT solution for Work Trucks
- Data generator – Sensors & Actuators, OBD, and GPS,
- On Vehicle Data aggregator (Gateway) – a device to collect data from data generator and perform data optimization if needed and send it to the cloud
- Connectivity to cloud – means by which the data gets transferred to the cloud either using cellular or wi-fi network
- IoT platform – cloud-based application to manage the incoming data, provisioning & de-provisioning of the devices, security management, and light data visualization & dashboard
- Data analytics and data visualization – for making sense of data and generating value to the users
How is IoT powerful?
Let’s give you a real world example happening around us.
There are a number of fleet management and telematics solutions available in the market. Most of these are based on OBDII & GPS data which gets transmitted using a cellular network to a server or a cloud. These solutions claim to help the Work Truck industry with the captured data elements.
What good is a truck that moves but does not do the work it is deployed for? What if a garbage truck cannot pick garbage? Or a sweeper truck that does not sweep? In reality, the useful information comes from onboard systems like hydraulics, refrigeration, electro-hydraulics and pneumatics that do the “work” and not just the engine and chassis based data- that is far too limited and incomplete. Parker is deploying IoT to get you just that – a more complete system.
We knew, if we instrument the garbage trucks with IoT to monitor and manage the natural gas fuel (CNG), chassis and hydraulics and predict maintenance, we could drastically improve fleet uptime. What we did not realize at first is that we could open a whole new realm — we could change the revenue and use model and not just the fleet uptime!
Today we all pay an average amount for garbage & sewage collection. The calculation is based on a city-wide average cost of what it takes to pick up garbage, sort it, put it in a landfill or the recycling streams and keep our city clean. What if the city could actually bill you based on your use and environmental impact? What if seasonal load changes could enable commercial waste pickup trucks to change their frequency? Going from every 7 days or every 2 weeks in a particular season to actually pick up every 4 days during high use? What if you paid for what you actually used and not the average price?
You could be rewarded for reducing landfills and increasing use of recycling. There would never be an overflowing garbage bin left without emptying or an empty one being picked up. The system would reward you for reducing waste and increasing recycling and reuse. It is not a unique idea — simple measurements on garbage trucks and smart identification of garbage cans is already being piloted and underway. The ubiquitous presence of connectivity and reduced cost of sensing and cloud storage are enabling and accelerating it.
Smart fuel and load management software
Parker Veriflo is engaged and making this happen with its Verifleet smart fuel and load management software designed especially for work truck fleets. VeriFleet is designed using Parker’s vast experience in motion and controls, deploying the fundamentals of IoT from the bottom up. Because the system is designed as an IoT system, we have addressed typical challenges such as network management, application design, security, mobility, and longevity. Condition monitoring and predictive maintenance for fleet managers are key.
IoT will transform your business so that you:
Deploy a fleet that services your organization's needs rather than an organization that services your fleet's needs!
Attend the 2017 ACT Expo
See it all at ACT Expo. The conference runs May 1-4 and the Expo runs May 2-3, 2017 in Long Beach, California. Stop by the Parker booth 845 and ask about our solutions for CNG and LNG applications.
Article contributed by:
Anil Raina, Engineering Manager, Parker Hannifin Veriflo Division
Sashi Chandrasekharan, IT Manager, Parker Hannifin Veriflo Division