In other words, it lets you take a proactive approach to theft prevention. ?You?re not waiting until the next day to realize that a valuable piece of equipment has left the job,? says Sims. ?It tells you immediately that the machine is being moved and sends you an alert over either your pager system or an e-mail.?
For maximum protection, some asset management systems can be coupled with an equipment recovery service. For example, LoCate by LoJack can be purchased with the Stolen Vehicle Recovery system. If a theft occurs, the police activate a hidden onboard transponder, which sends a signal that enables them to track and recover the stolen item.
Qualcomm?s GlobalTRACS system offers advanced equipment locating via active geofencing. ?If you had a machine that was being stolen, you could call our hotline 24/7, which will put the machine on an every two-minute reporting cycle,? says Sims. ?This means the machine will send in its position every two minutes.?
Longview Advantage works with ?Commissionaires? to provide a 24/7 recovery center as an add-on feature to its standard system. The Commissionaires manage the center, which is staffed with all ex-military and law enforcement. ?Because they have the background, they have the ability to speak the same language,? says Yarmie. ?They tend to get a solution much faster when they?re dealing with the police.?
The next level of asset management technology utilizes digital or analog sensors to monitor critical operating data.
?You have the ability... to attach sensors to areas of the machine to monitor critical health problems or productivity information,? Sims explains. For example, with the GlobalTRACS system, sensors can be used to monitor engine temperature, oil pressure and other critical functions. ?Now you have not only basic operating data, but you have emergency-type data, as well, so you can shut a machine down and have it taken care of before it becomes a high-cost problem.?
Sensors can also be used to track productivity. For example, a sensor could be positioned on a paver?s augers to track material flow. As the auger turns, a signal is sent back to the telematic device, which records how much time the machine actually worked in the paving mode.
Even more data can be captured by OEM-supplied asset management systems. The more advanced electronics found in new, low-emission machines enables ready communication between major operating systems (engine, transmission, hydraulics, etc.). This, in turn, is collected via CAN bus (Controller Area Network) technology, and select data is transmitted to a company-sponsored secure web site.
OEM-supplied systems offer several advantages. ?Komatsu?s tracking system, as with most other OEMs supplying their own system, will have access to more of the data being monitored and recorded by the machine?s controllers and sensors,? explains Chris Wasik, manager, Equipment Monitoring & Applications, Komatsu America Corp. ?At the basic level, most all our equipment where KOMTRAX is standard will report daily location, engine-on hours, residual fuel quantity, machine maintenance reminders, cautions and abnormalities, as well as allow various types of engine restart prevention.
?As the technology in the machine increases, so does the information you are able to view on the web site,? he continues. ?The machines with our 7-in. in-cab color monitor panel are so advanced, the KOMTRAX logic is self-contained, allowing much more data to be transmitted from the various onboard controllers through the external modem. This allows you to see data such as yesterday?s idle time, actual fuel consumption, hours spent in the various operating modes, work load charts, time spent traveling and more.?
This data lets you to track both operator and machine performance. ?More importantly, [it provides] the data you need to measure the effect any fuel consumption or idle time reduction strategies have on the equipment?s actual operation,? Wasik asserts. ?Being able to implement and gauge the effectiveness of idle time reduction measures doesn?t just lower the hours on the machine each day and week. It also keeps the machine?s residual value high, lowers fuel expenses and decreases PM costs by reducing the number required each year.?