Internet of Things (IoT) technology enables otherwise unconnected objects to be connected digitally. The technology already is transforming industries such as automobile manufacturing, consumer products, shipping and logistics and more. IoT in construction promises to be transformative as well.
With IoT, objects are tagged with unique identifiers (UID), through technology such as UHF RFID chips. As “smart” objects, they can collect and transfer data through a gateway and over a network, all without the involvement of human operators. That data can be put to use in a variety of ways, depending on the application.
Fact is, such smart construction technology makes good sense. According to an article in Orange Business Services:
The (construction) industry has seen a rise in operational complexities, and since the start of the current decade, construction companies have been growing in scale and expanding their operations geographically and in the type of projects they undertake. They need to manage projects simultaneously in different geographies, while also needing to optimize asset lifecycle management and manage projects to tighter deadlines to prevent potential delays and reduce unnecessary costs.
All this means that more robust project management is needed in the face of intensifying competition and the need to be more environmentally focused. Digital technologies are providing the way forward.
Paul Tucker, global ICT sales and account management professional
To learn more about trends in the Construction industry, read our white paper, Off-Road Trends: Driving Cleaner, More Efficient and Connected Machinery.
IoT enables smart construction, where machines collect and transmit data to each other, via cloud networks, to site supervisors, company managers, and even original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). Sensors placed on individual pieces of IoT construction equipment can track performance and location, providing broad datasets for further analysis.
According to a projection by Bain and Co., 6.8 million smart construction machines will be shipped between 2018 and 2025.
Many of Parker’s core equipment offerings already are being outfitted with the types of sensors described above. These are designed to integrate with the Parker Mobile IoT solution, which includes a ruggedly engineered gateway that’s installed on a machine (an excavator or loader, for instance) to create smart construction technology. The gateway then collects data made available by the sensors and transmits it to the Parker Internet cloud.
That data can then be made available to construction project supervisors, company managers, OEMs, and other stakeholders, and analyzed by Parker software to provide a range of actionable information. In the future, the technology may provide for levels of autonomy, where the equipment can respond by itself to the gathered data. Imagine a construction crane that turns itself off when detecting a failure mode, helping avoid damage, and possibly preventing a safety issue.
The Parker solution thus allows construction equipment OEMs to track and stay in touch with all the machines they have deployed in every fleet, in every country throughout the world, in real-time. So, they know the status of every machine: whether or not it’s operating, and whether or not it has failure modes. It allows them to deliver new services and capabilities to their end-users — the owners/operators of those machines— that they couldn’t deliver before.
Download our white paper Off-Road Trends: Driving Cleaner, More Efficient and Connected Machinery, and learn what influences the advances in mobile heavy machinery.
This article was contributed by Hydraulics Team.
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