North Star Systems is a hardware and software developer in Saskatchewan, Canada that manufactures Tattle Systems, a tool that supports business operations. Tattle Systems capabilities take technology to the next level. Real-time remote location, level, and data reporting define Tattle Systems. In our North Stars Systems Technology Tuesday series we will be exploring the business, culture, and impact of the technology industry. In our latest article, North Star Systems shares our thoughts on IoT delivering decision-critical information.
IoT Driving Decision-Critical Information
Ah, yes, the cry of the exasperated parent or a business owner. Sometimes, it’s the same person.For business at least, this wish for a real-time presence over many locations at once can be delivered through the Industrial Internet of Things (IoT). IoT is the interconnection of sensors embedded in assets or carried by personnel, linked via the Internet to computers that can crunch the data. Distributed assets and customers can take a lot of time to manage. Customer phone calls (and associated games of phone tag). Sending employees to check tank levels or perform routine maintenance checks. Calling or texting drivers to find out where they are and where they’re headed.By automating these routine tasks, IoT frees up time for the tasks only a skilled live professional can perform.IoT can link business assets anywhere in the world where a wireless connection is available (typically, cell phone networks). This means that whether your enterprise covers a district, province, or continent, you can indeed be everywhere at once.For example, a transportation company can use IoT to know the status of every load, location of every truck, and its position in relation to the rest of the fleet. Potentially, IoT could monitor the status of everything from the state of the wheels to the lubricants in the power train. Such a system can simultaneously alert both driver and dispatch of impending problems, or to manage maintenance schedules to coincide with expected downtime.IoT also eases the management of assets that are difficult or even dangerous to get to. Industrial sites often feature tall structures such as stacks, or tanks that may hold anything from fuel to anhydrous ammonia. Even bulk commodities such as grains and fertilizer can be hazardous, as any farmer knows. Working with these assets demands time-consuming procedures to keep workers safe.The value of real-time IoT data extends to security of assets as well. IoT-enabled fuel and fertilizer tanks, grain storage bins, and product storage tanks can alert the human operator when something is awry. For example, a sudden drop in a remote bin or tank at 3:00 a.m. might indicate a structural failure or even a theft in progress, allowing the operator to act accordingly. In-person checks and inspections are also limited; their information is only as good as the last visit. IoT systems allow assets to be monitored remotely, continuously, in real-time. This allows continuous data-driven decisions. What needs to be done right now? What needs to be done next and when is the best time to do it? With IoT, you really can be everywhere at once, with as many “eyes” as you need. And with real-time data-driven decisions, you’re always topped up; you’re always ready to roll.
“I can’t be everywhere at once! I wish I had eyes on the back of my head!”