Plant Equipment Delivers Information That Producers Can Use.
By Mark S. Kuhar
At this year’s ConExpo-Con/Agg show, one of the buzz phrases I kept hearing from industry manufacturers was “Actionable Intelligence.” Technology offers aggregates producers the opportunity to not only gather critical information about plant equipment, but to use that information to maximize machine life, enhance productivity and generate greater profitability.
|Operator training services help customer’s operators safely move the maximum amount of material in the minimum amount of time.|
Caterpillar, for instance, is adding a greater emphasis on telematics to its suite of offerings. The company recently added Productivity Services to its portfolio of technology-enabled Cat Connect Services.
Caterpillar and the Cat dealer network have provided technology-enabled services for years, including Equipment Management and Safety Services. With the launch of new Productivity Services, Caterpillar and Cat dealers will bolster existing services while helping customers further streamline operations, control costs and reduce risk.
The introduction of Productivity Services is an extension of Caterpillar’s and Cat dealer’s roles as trusted advisors to construction customers. Productivity Services include seven key offerings:
Utilization Reporting. Enables managers to see how assets are performing. The service organizes and prioritizes data collected from an asset and presents it in formats that allow customers to answer questions about performance over time – by shift, workday or in aggregated fleet views, which show trends and patterns.
Geospatial Mapping. Maps jobsites accurately and quickly. Unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) capture high-resolution images of a jobsite. These images allow specialized analytics software to measure productivity and can also be used to evaluate site setup and design.
Benchmark Assessments. Makes best use of shared industry knowledge to help customers succeed. Dealer experts perform assessments on a customer asset or site operation. The results are used to establish a measurement baseline that will be used to gauge future project successes.
Operator Training. Bolsters skills that maximize production. Operator training services help customer’s operators safely move the maximum amount of material in the minimum amount of time while reducing equipment wear and tear.
Site Efficiency Training. Improves the knowledge of the customer’s supervisor, helping them understand how to measure productivity and identify opportunities for improved efficiency.
Productivity Monitoring. Helps maximize productivity and efficiency with jobsite recommendations. Dealer consultants rely on utilization data, site information and their own experience to advise customers on how to maximize the performance of assets and operators on a jobsite to meet the customer’s definition of success.
Productivity Management. Services ensure production outcomes. Dealer consultants help customers optimize their site designs, fleet strategies and equipment use to meet specific productivity targets.
Technology-enabled services are evolving the jobsite. With their depth and breadth of knowledge and access to decades of industry data, Caterpillar and its worldwide dealers are well positioned to ensure customers not only get the most out of their technology, but also provide trusted and actionable insights and recommendations to improve customers’ jobsites and their bottom line.
|Scheduled automatic alerts can be customized at any interval to help streamline scheduled maintenance.|
CASE has also hopped on the telematics bandwagon with SiteWatch. The innovative solution makes fleet management easier by providing measurable and actionable information that is readily available. SiteWatch also makes fleet management more productive and profitable, helping users build a stronger business.
Increased Production. System capabilities allow you to see which machines are being used and which ones are not. This information will help address any issues, helping to make an immediate improvement on costs of fuel, maintenance and ownership.
Simplified Maintenance. Scheduled automatic alerts can be customized at any interval to help streamline scheduled maintenance. Machines that are serviced on a more consistent basis result in healthier and more productive fleets with maximum uptime.
Reliable Security. Protect your fleet with security features such as machine curfew, geofencing and motion detection. Not only will SiteWatch send text or email messages whenever unauthorized usage or movement occurs, but if your machine does leave the premises, the system can aid in tracking and recovery as well.
Accurate Job Costing. Detailed and precise machine run time information is provided daily with office software integration, eliminating any need for human data entry.
|ActiveCare Direct is a unique, manufacturer-provided remote machine monitoring and reporting service, overseen by a team of data analysts at the company’s new Uptime Center.|
Volvo is removing the noise, time commitment and data analysis associated with telematics by providing 24-7/365 active machine monitoring and monthly fleet reporting direct from Volvo, and in partnership with Volvo dealers. The program gives customers insights and actionable recommendations, saving them time and money.
Available on a wide range of Volvo Construction Equipment models, ActiveCare Direct is a unique, manufacturer-provided remote machine monitoring and reporting service, overseen by a team of data analysts at the company’s new Uptime Center in Shippensburg, Pa.
The process is simple: Volvo monitors customers’ machines, capturing thousands of machine data points through its CareTrack telematics system. Those data points are analyzed by the Volvo proprietary system in real time, keeping track of machine health and performance. Each month, Volvo generates a comprehensive telematics report for the customer, highlighting areas of opportunity to increase productivity and reduce operating costs.
Each month, Volvo generates consolidated fleet reports for the customer, focused on trends in machine utilization and operator behavior. Volvo dealers then work closely with their customers to identify opportunities for improvement.
The monthly report includes fleet utilization data that allows customers to view percentage work time versus idle time by individual machine, by machine type, and by month for historic reference and benchmarking. Reports also compare groups of machines as measured by average hours, average gallons used per hour, and average work and idle percentages.
Instances of potential machine abuse are logged in order to identify needs for operator training. These instances include high shift speeds, hot turbo shutdowns, excessive speeds and more. Data is also captured for each individual machine in the fleet – including average gallons used per hour, work and idle percentages, gallons burned in idle, and hours until the next service.
These data points help Volvo, the dealer and the customer work together to identify actions that can greatly impact profitability. For instance, idle time knowledge can help highlight the opportunity for reconfiguring a machine’s path or placement on a jobsite, and consistent underutilization may highlight a need for an entirely different fleet configuration.
The greatest benefit is that a customer no longer has to spend time digging for the insights among the numerous data points in a report – that’s being done on their behalf by Volvo and a Volvo dealer.
John Deere is adding Foresight Intelligence to its range of construction data solutions to increase dealer efficiencies and customer uptime. The collaboration utilizes Foresight’s Intelligent Alert Triage Center (IATC) and helps John Deere dealers and customers better manage daily machine alerts. IATC enables dealers to easily capture, consolidate and prioritize diagnostic trouble codes, oil sampling results, preventative maintenance alerts and more into one centralized and secure portal.
Many John Deere dealers across North America are already utilizing IATC with great results. Advanced analytics make it possible to thoroughly monitor and understand machine health, and uncover trends, such as when a specific type of machine typically fails or when common problems arise among machine populations or in certain applications.
Dealers can track individual and branch performance from ticket statistics and easily identify successful activities and areas for improvement based on real-time data. They can also collaborate across dealerships to rapidly deliver solutions.
Crushing for Dollars
While loaders and haul trucks are ideal “vehicles” for actionable intelligence, crushers are not far behind.
At ConExpo-Con/Agg, Kleemann introduced the MOBICONE MCO 11i PRO mobile cone crusher to North America. Designed for tough and demanding quarry applications, this high-performance cone crusher is powered by a diesel-electric drive and achieves an output of up to 518 short tph.
The plant can also be equipped with an external power supply for even more efficient operation. As the hydraulics are installed in the lower part of the plant, the MCO 11i PRO has a low center of gravity, and thus more stability, reducing noise and vibrations to a minimum. All plant components can be easily reached from the ground or via spacious work platforms for maintenance work and refueling the plant.
With SPECTIVE, Kleemann offered a new, intuitive control concept. SPECTIVE is simple to understand and supports the operator in his or her work. The use of clear symbols makes all plant functions recognizable at a glance. Only the information relevant for the machine operation is displayed.
Similar in presentation to a smart phone, the operator is guided by the control system, reducing the potential for operating errors. In addition, data relating to the machine operation can be retrieved via the control system, and the levels of diesel and lube oil, for example, can be viewed in the plant cockpit. SPECTIVE is available initially for the MOBICONE MCO 11i PRO and the latest impact crushers in the MOBIREX MR EVO2 series.
|An automatic level sensor above the crushing chamber controls the feed rate and minimizes operator intervention for maximum production and reduction.|
The Sandvik QS331 has been designed to accept large feed sizes and achieve high production capacities. This produces benefits for customers by delivering improved productivity on such applications as Type 1, crusher run or in primary gravel crushing.
As a fully integrated mobile plant, efficiency and productivity are the key attributes of the Sandvik QS331.
Key technology features that result in actionable intelligence include:
- Automatic level sensor above the crushing chamber to control the feed rate and minimize operator intervention for maximum production and reduction.
- Metal detector fitted as standard to provide maximum stability and protection from tramp material
- Remote camera for visibility of the crushing chamber from ground level
Metso selected Rockwell Automation to deliver a global industrial Internet of Things (IoT) platform that connects, monitors and performs analytics for Metso’s equipment and services, resulting in improved efficiency and profitability for its mining and aggregates customers.
The digital solution will securely collect and store data from Metso’s equipment around the globe, including new equipment and machines already in operation. The solution will provide predictive analytics and preventive maintenance, and facilitate remote asset monitoring by Metso and its customers.
The industrial IoT solution is built on the FactoryTalk Cloud platform from Rockwell Automation, powered by Microsoft Azure. Rockwell Automation and Microsoft have long collaborated on solutions required for industrial digital transformation. The Metso solution is a direct result of these efforts.
Metso began working with Rockwell Automation on a pilot program in 2015, remotely monitoring an African-based mining crusher from a location in Wisconsin. Metso was immediately able to use the data collected to identify opportunities for improvements in machine performance. The quality of the solution and support Rockwell Automation provided during the pilot gave Metso confidence that a broader implementation of the industrial IoT platform would drive the results it was seeking on a global scale.
|Advanced analytics also help operations of any size or location maximize tire usage.|
Tire-tracking technology has been in place for years, but Bridgestone Americas is taking it to the next level. The company introduced the next generation of its off-the-road (OTR) tire and rim management software, TreadStat.
The performance tracking solution has been enhanced to include several new features that support the evolving needs of the global OTR industry. The TreadStat system uses industry-relevant analytics to help customers manage the lifecycle cost of their tires for increased efficiency and profitability.
TreadStat features a new, innovative user interface that increases productivity through customizable dashboards that deliver rich analytics directly to users’ computers, tablets or smartphones anywhere in the world.
Global efficiency is increased by technology improvements such as additional multilingual support, convenient application program interfaces, instantaneous data conversion and integration with the B-TAG tire pressure and temperature management system from Bridgestone. Advanced analytics also help operations of any size or location maximize tire usage, manage inventory, improve safety and minimize expenses.
Forecasting, work scheduling and budgeting also are improved by the data-driven analytics platform. Bridgestone has enhanced the TreadStat tool to be accessible on mobile devices and tablets through the TreadStat Mobile Inspection app. The app ensures vital details are accessible on any device across the globe, and allows users to quickly and easily:
- Conduct vehicle inspections online or offline, saving time, eliminating paper and improving productivity.
- Conveniently note critical exceptions requiring immediate action and share data via email to reduce operating costs.
- Manage a global operation via one system to unify data-driven tire and rim management decisions for increased efficiency.
If there is a new technology that is driving data collection at a quarry operation, it is drones.
Luck Stone, the construction aggregate division of Richmond, Va.-based Luck Companies, plans to accelerate its growth in Unmanned Aircraft Vehicle (UAV) technology through a new partnership with Airware, a national and global provider of commercial enterprise solutions for capturing and analyzing aerial data.
As an early adopter of UAV technology, Luck Stone now owns a small fleet of UAVs that are deployed several times a week to collect data at many of the company’s 22 operations in Virginia and North Carolina. Another corporate investment in this fast-evolving field of expertise was dedicating an associate to be a full-time licensed UAV pilot.
“Luck Stone recognized the need to acquire greater amounts of accurate, repeatable data from the air that could be easily accessed and analyzed for improved operational efficiency,” said John Blackmore, survey and mapping supervisor at Luck Stone.
“UAV technology is changing rapidly, so we began talking with Airware last year, and evaluating all of the drone solutions on the market,” he said. “We were very impressed with Airware’s advanced, end-to-end UAV data collection processes and powerful analytics tools that were developed specifically for the mining and aggregate industry, which led to this exciting partnership.”
“As one of the nation’s top aggregate producers, Luck Stone is committed to innovation in all aspects of operations,” said Mark Christian, customer engagement manager for Airware. “We are looking forward to joining forces with a company that understands the value of UAV technology and its potential to dramatically impact their business.”
While flying above Luck Stone operations, UAVs take hundreds of aerial photos that will be uploaded to Airware’s cloud-based platform. The business intelligence resulting from those images will be used for a variety of decision-making purposes to include volumetric measurements, safety inspections and pit efficiency analytics.
John Deere and Kespry announced an exclusive global strategic alliance through which John Deere Construction & Forestry dealers will provide the Kespry Aerial Intelligence System to their customers on job sites around the world. Starting in North America, the alliance enables John Deere customers to use Kespry’s fully integrated industrial drone platform to capture topographic data in minutes with survey-grade accuracy.
“This technology will help our dealers offer a seamless workflow to site development and road building contractors from project planning through grading dirt,” said Andrew Kahler, product marketing manager, John Deere WorkSight. “The data gathered from the Kespry system will help our customers and equipment operators make decisions that reduce costs and improve productivity as they optimize the job site and spend less time on jobs.”
Founded in 2013, Menlo Park, Calif.-based Kespry delivers a fully automated drone system that takes off, flies a designated flight path and lands – all without operator intervention. With the Kespry Drone 2s now available across the John Deere network, customers can easily create a mission with the touch of a finger, then capture, analyze and share survey-grade data and insights.
“Our relationship with John Deere will accelerate the adoption of drone solutions in industrial markets and will rapidly change how business is done in construction, road building and other industrial sectors,” said George Mathew, chairman and CEO of Kespry. “These advanced aerial intelligence systems are already changing the face of work in industrial markets as surveyors and contractors are able to retool their skill sets for this increasingly connected world.”
John Deere chose Kespry based on its interoperability with John Deere WorkSight technologies and ease of use for customers. The agreement between the two companies includes Kespry working with John Deere dealers to train and certify them in the use of the Kespry 2s platform.