Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Semtech LoRa brings monitoring to smart construction machines

Steve Rogerson
May 1, 2019



UK telematics firm MachineMax is using Semtech’s LoRa technology to provide tracking and monitoring in smart construction machines.
 
“With Semtech’s LoRa technology, we were able to create simple, easy to deploy solutions which effectively monitor machine status from anywhere on a construction or mining site,” said Amit Rai, CEO at MachineMax. “Real-time data from the sensors are presented to site managers, offering tangible insight into their fleet’s efficiency. Managers can use these data to identify problem areas at their site, and work to reduce machine idling, reducing fuel waste and maintenance costs.”
 
Machine idling, where a machine’s engine is running but the machine is not actively in use, accounts for an estimated 37% of the time a construction or mining machine is operating on average. Idling results in an increased amount of fuel waste and machine wear, without creating productive machine output.
 
Previously, monitoring the usage status of a mining or construction fleet was accomplished manually, with site managers continually checking on the use status of machines, an expensive and time consuming task. MachineMax developed a LoRa-based method that can be easily deployed on fleet machines in under a minute. The devices attach magnetically and gather real-time data on machine usage status, such as whether or not a machine is idle.
 
With real-time data on when a machine is in use, site managers can make more efficient use of a machine’s time to prevent idling, reducing the amount of fuel used and prolonging machine life.
 
“LoRa technology enables the capacity to track data and diagnostics across entire fleets, making it the ideal IoT technology for MachineMax,” said Marc Pegulu, vice president at California-based Semtech. “MachineMax’s sensors easily deploy in less than a minute, requiring no external power source or additional infrastructure. LoRa-based devices offer real-time and reliable data communication, allowing the end users to analyse their usage trends and make the changes necessary to save money.”
 
Semtech’s LoRa devices and wireless radio frequency technology give telecoms companies, IoT application makers and system integrators the feature set to deploy low-cost, interoperable IoT networks, gateways, sensors, module products and IoT services worldwide.
 
MachineMax produces telematics for increasing the profitability of off-highway fleet. It uses IoT technologies, cloud computing and machine learning to help construction and mining companies cut fuel, maintenance and rental costs, reduce carbon emissions and improve site's productivity. MachineMax is compatible with all makes and models, regardless of the machine's age and works on rented and owned equipment.
 
Installation takes less than a minute thanks to its wireless design. It is IP68 rated and built to stand the harshest conditions. Backed by industry heavyweights including Shell, Boston Consulting Group and B Capital, MachineMax is UK-based but serves users worldwide.