Internet of Things: The connected service case
Apr 20, 2017
The costly loss of its technical service carrying cases was a big problem for compressed air specialist KAESER. Not any more! T-Systems is connecting the service cases to the cloud – in order to protect the operating materials.
An unassuming gray exterior featuring the company's pale yellow logo hides much more than just any old tool box from the hardware store. The kits, which cost around 1,500 euros, contain special measuring equipment used by the air compressor specialist's technicians to perform on-site air demand analyses. But these expensive carrying case kits have one crucial disadvantage: "A lost case is very costly for us and difficult to replace," says Oliver Pschirrer, head of service at KAESER Kompressoren.
Protecting operating materials
The company has seen this happen more than once in the past. "Some carrying cases were difficult to pinpoint or had gone missing altogether," says Oliver Pschirrer. This is because technicians hook up the measuring equipment to the customer's machines for a period of at least ten days in order to gather a detailed picture of the customer's actual compressed air requirements and compressor utilization levels, making it easy to lose track of all of their locations. From its headquarters in Coburg, Bavaria, the company had major difficulty monitoring which cases were located where and their status.
Connected service cases communicate their whereabouts
Lost cases are now a thing of the past: With the help of T-Systems, the compressor specialist has connected 400 of its around 4,000 measuring kits to the cloud. They report their location to the IoT platform at regular intervals using GPS and an integral SIM card. The platform is operated by T-Systems at one of its high-security data centers in Germany. KAESER thus has full transparency over the whereabouts of its valuable equipment.
Another advantage: KAESER can also monitor the battery status of the GPS tracker module via the Cloud of Things dashboard and ensure that only carrying cases with fully charged batteries are sent out. The Internet of Things opens up even more possibilities for the company in future. For example, together with T-Systems, KAESER is also planning to connect individual compressors to the cloud. Measurements can thus be recorded and sent automatically. This data is analyzed in the cloud and displayed via a dashboard. The result: Compressor faults can be identified at an early stage and tackled immediately to prevent any downtime.
Tracking solutions by rail and water
T-Systems connects technical service cases from KAESER to the cloud.
A slightly modified version of the track-and-trace solution used by KAESER is already working to optimize processes in numerous other areas. For example, Hamburg-based shipping company Deutsche Afrika-Linien (DAL) uses a tracking solution to monitor the location and status of its containers at all times. The solution enables DAL to respond to unexpected incidents and guarantee the delivery of goods on time.
What works on water also works by rail: Some 13,000 freight cars used by Deutsche Bahn rail services to transport more than 600,000 metric tons daily are also equipped with track-and-trace solutions. This is part of a scalable solution from the cloud offered by T-Systems together with SAP Transportation Management, and which is used by logistics managers to optimize and automatically steer their transport management activities.