The service interval of an Emergence Taival location tracker can be even 10 years. This top product, developed in Finland, transmits the location of a moving object no matter if it were on the ground or on the sea - even in the harshest conditions.
Where does a specific container, pallet, trolley, work machine or a seamark move and where is it right now? These problems are being solved within numerous companies all over the world.
”We searched the offering and spotted a significant shortcoming in all location trackers. They all require maintenance, for example their batteries need to be charged or changed regularly. Maintenance is a remarkable cost", says CTO of Emergence Oy, Jori Arrakoski.
An idea about a maintenance-free and cost-effective location tracking device was born.
”Taival location tracker works 10 years on its own, without any need for servicing or charging or changing batteries. It tolerates well the frozen cold, the desert heat, the scorching heat and humidity of the tropic, as well as the salty sea-air”, Jori Arrakoski counts proudly.
”No single competitor reaches anywhere near”, praises Jori Arrakoski.
Fluent integration into customer’s system
”Our cloud service operates the location tracking devices and transmits the location information together with any other collected data to the customer’s system. Usually the adaptation work is carried out by our software specialists; if needed, also by a third party”, tells Jori Arrakoski.
In other words, implementing and operating the positioning service is as straight-forward for the subscriber as possible. Also the information security is of top quality.
”Positioning also offers other benefits than just information on the location of an object. For instance, utilization rates can be analysed and optimized, tendencies can be seen and operations streamlined. There are plenty of opportunities”, reminds Jori Arrakoski.
”We accepted the design task humble but with enthusiasm. It was obvious that even the most experienced designers had to squeeze in every bit of their expertise and know-how to fulfil the requirements”, remembers Chief Electronics Designer Eero Heikkinen. He is responsible for Etteplan’s part of the project, i.e. hardware design.
The usage power for the electronics is produced by a solar panel which stores the energy in batteries for the dark hours. However, the whole Nordic winter is dark. Thus, the battery power needs to be sufficient for half a year. In addition, severe frost reduces the power available from the batteries.
It was important to find suitable technology and scale for the batteries and solar panels. Every single bit of energy needs to be stored.
”Moreover, the device must be as energy-saving as possible. This is achieved with careful design of both electronics and the embedded software. Each part of the electronics, like GNSS receiver, data connection to the mobile network and bluetooth is switched on only when needed. Location data is not updated unless the object moves”, lists Eero Heikkinen.
Also the heat needs to be managed, as for example the containers may wait transport under ruthless sunshine even for weeks. This was remedied through careful design of the mechanics.
Emergence Taival location tracker weighs around 150 grams. It tolerates water and dust according to the IP67 specification. Permitted usage temperature range is -30..+65 C.
The nucleus of the electronics is formed by Bluetooth LE SoC from the nRF52x series by Nordic Semiconductor and the SARA GPRS and M8 based GNSS modules by u-Blox.
GNSS positioning utilizes GPS and Glonass systems; in the future also Galileo and BeiDou, if needed. The device includes Bluetooth LE, GPRS and a Global M2M e SIM. LTE NB-IoT will be implemented during 2018. The device can be connected with customer-specific sensors and other devices.
”Emergence’s own team defined the requirements and made the concept and high-level system designs. System design of the device was made together with Etteplan’s specialists. We ordered the device’s design, implementation and production-readiness from Etteplan”
”We are very satisfied with Etteplan’s work. The equipment meets the strict requirements fantastically”
Moving objects under control
At the end of 2017, Taival location trackers were installed in dozens of Finnish seamarks along the paths of Rauma and Pyhäranta for action. Thanks to the location trackers, Finnish Transport Agency is notified immediately if the seamarks are being dislocated by ice or other severe elements of the Baltic Sea. The location trackers can also be used for monitoring the movements of ice.
There are several ongoing pilot projects , related to for example monitoring pallets or other movables.