Bulk Distributor Jan/Feb20 | Page 4

4 Asset Management B ULK D ISTRIBUTOR January/February 2020 Nexxiot brings transparency to VTG tank fleet S tarting from this spring, Zurich-based Nexxiot will equip VTG’s entire tank container fleet with IoT sensors. The Swiss company signed a contract to this effect with VTG Rail Europe GmbH. All of the current 9,000 tank containers are being equipped with the ‘Globehopper’ sensors developed by Nexxiot so that they can be located and monitored worldwide. Nexxiot says this brings more transparency and planning capability to VTG’s processes and at the same time means added value for its end customers. “The tank container industry continues to evolve and is becoming increasingly digital,” said Nexxiot CEO Helmut Kaspers. “This offers operators of large fleets the opportunity to make practical use of the resulting data. Our solution enables VTG to call up information on the cargo, condition and punctuality of its tank containers at any time. Our service works worldwide and across all modes of transport. In this way, VTG can guarantee its customers more transparent transport for liquid and temperature-controlled products.” For VTG Tanktainer, managing director Jan Röbken, shares the idea of a digital, transparent and secure supply chain. “Security and transparency in the supply chain are enormously important for our tank containers and we welcome every opportunity to optimise this,” he commented. “We want to make efficient use of the opportunities offered to us by new technologies. Nexxiot has extensive experience in the digitised supply chain, especially in rail freight, and is now our strategic partner in the digitalisation of our global tank container fleet.” The IoT sensors provided by Nexxiot meet high safety standards. The new generation of Globehoppers introduced in May 2019 is certified with the ATEX markings IIC and IIIC. This allows their operation even in areas where there is a constant risk of explosion, especially during loading and unloading. In addition to the hardware, Nexxiot has developed a software solution to analyse the information generated. The company offers the complete infrastructure with a cloud-based platform for processing the data from the sensors. For VTG, this information will be fed directly into the company’s systems via an integrated solution from 2020. Nexxiot and VTG are working closely together to design the solution - from the devices up to the gained information. Currently, Nexxiot has already equipped around 50,000 transport objects such as freight wagons and tank containers with sensors worldwide and provides the corresponding service. Between 3,000 and 4,000 objects are being added each month. In October last year, Nexxiot was accepted as a member of ITCO. With the establishment at its last members meeting of a dedicated work group, focusing on standards for communication and telematics, ITCO’s membership is increasingly recognising the importance of IoT-solutions for the sector. Nexxiot says it will play a central role within ITCO in the establishment of international Nexxiot’s solution enables VTG to call up information on the cargo, condition and punctuality of its tank containers standards for the industry. “Standardisation is an evolving practice,” said Patrick Hicks, ITCO’s general secretary, “with inbuilt adjustment mechanisms. ITCO involves as many stakeholder groups as possible, to enable a discussion comprising all the important technological and commercial concerns. For this reason, Nexxiot’s contribution to ITCO’s work, as an expert in digitalisation of the freight market, will contribute to work that the organisation is undertaking and provide benefits to our members.” “Standardisation is a key for a highly efficient digitised supply chain,” added Tim Thiemann, segment head tank container at Nexxiot. “Particularly in the area of IoT, there must be agreed standards to ensure that quality, safety and sustainability in the tank container industry are maintained in the future. Nexxiot works with the most advanced solutions for the supply chain and we have extensive experience in digitising large fleets of cargo assets. That is why we want to use our know-how to support the goals of ITCO.” New standards will potentially reduce conflicts among technology providers, as open and inclusive standards ensure the market is not flooded with inappropriate IoT technology. An agreed standardisation process will guarantee that business cases are supported and operability issues covered. “The global supply chain stakeholders require interoperability which means inclusive standards for both hardware and software, open protocols for communication platforms and business processes. Interoperability standards will increase supply chain efficiency and enrich the market with better suited products which do not compromise on quality,” explained Marianna Levtov, commercial project manager at Nexxiot. Among ITCO members, the value of standardisation is particularly important in the field of cargo quality. Since sensitive cargo is being transported, the ability to control its status strengthens ITCO members’ position with beneficial cargo owners. Nexxiot believes great value is extracted from gaining a strong mutual understanding of the requirements and challenges and can help to define an industry wide vision which forms the basis of any consortium of interests and subsequent ongoing negotiations. www.nexxiot.com AIS compulsory for inland barges in North Sea Port S Carrs Billington opts for Microlise U K agricultural supplier Carrs Billington is deploying the Microlise Solution, including its Fleet Performance and Journey Management products across its fleet of 60 vehicles. Carrs Billington runs feed mills at Carlisle, Lancaster and Stone and has a network of 32 country stores throughout Northern England, Scotland and Wales. The Microlise products will be used to increase fuel efficiency, reduce mileage run and support improved driver performance. Journey Management will allow the supplier to understand the location of its fleet against plan in real time, while data will also highlight performance against schedule and routes, alerting the team to any potential missed time slots before they’ve happened. Driver performance monitoring will support drivers and deliver increased efficiencies across fuel usage as well as vehicle wear and tear. According to Phil Rothera, national distribution manager at Carrs Billington Operations: “We have an ambitious target to deliver increased fuel efficiency and to support driver performance. When we realise these improvements, we will continue with our planned programme of investment to provide additional technological support to our drivers in the field.” “Carrs Billington has a keen focus on fleet efficiencies which is commendable,” said Microlise CEO Nadeem Raza. “We are pleased to be providing additional tools to manage, monitor and positively impact on its operation and drive improved operational efficiencies.” ince 1 November 2019, inland vessels have been obliged to use the North Sea Ports automatic identification system (AIS) in Terneuzen. This means that AIS is now compulsory in the entire port area, making it easier for North Sea Port to follow all vessel movements from Flushing (Netherlands) to Ghent (Belgium), which will promote safety in the port area. Until recently, AIS was only compulsory for inland vessels in Flushing and in Ghent, but not in Terneuzen. Now that AIS is also required for Terneuzen, movements of inland vessels can be traced throughout the 60 km cross-border port area. This is important for vessels in transit as well as for ships moored at quays – a total of around 50,000 inland vessels a year. As a merged port, North Sea Port can make operations of inland vessels, shipping companies and other companies more straightforward and consistent throughout the port area. This uniform method facilitates traffic management and increases safety, the port says. AIS tracking is also important for interaction between inland vessels.