Operations and Maintenance of Construction Equipments using AWS IoT

About Spartan

Spartan Engineering Industries Pvt. Ltd is a Mumbai based leading manufacturer and supplier of high quality construction machineries and equipment. It was founded in the year 1971 and it forayed in to the field of manufacturing and supplying construction equipment in the year 2006. Since its four decades of existence in Engineering Industry, the company has displayed a remarkable growth trajectory in construction equipment manufacturing.

The Challenge

Spartans supplies heavy construction machinery to builders on lease. These are hoist machines which come equipped with OEM provided PLCs. Almost all aspects of the machinery can be controlled and monitored by these PLC devices. Since these PLCs are constrained devices, they don’t have internet connectivity for remote controlling and monitoring. Hence, engineers have to travel to construction site locations for maintenance, breakdown or basic troubleshooting leading, leading to unnecessary travels and wastage of time and money.

High level challenges:

  • Machine usage can’t be tracked remotely
  • Important sensor readings can’t be tracked remotely
  • Asset location tracking

The Solution

Flentas helped define and implement overall IoT solution for operations and monitoring:

  • IoT Gateway device attached to the equipment and connected to the PLC for fetching register data using Modbus ASCII
  • IoT Gateway was connected to AWS IoT Core via integrated 4G module
  • GSM based location tracking for monitoring asset movement
  • Buffering data points on SD card attached to the gateway in case of downstream network issues
  • MQTT protocol for downstream communication to AWS IoT core on cloud
  • Pi Zero based module for gateway software deployment
  • The data flow was setup according to these layers: PLC -> IoT Gateway -> IoT Core -> Kinesis -> Database -> REST APIs for internal consumption
  • REST APIs were implemented and consumed by Spartans team in their existing O&M application and mobile app

The Benefits

  • Remote actuation of important machinery operations saving on-site personnel visits
  • Track usage of machinery for metering and scheduling maintenance jobs
  • Sensors to track warranty void scenarios in case of false claims
  • Asset tracking for reducing equipment misuse by alerting stakeholders of misplacement
  • Notifications to on-ground operations team for fault signals from machinery for quicker MTTR

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