Waste management is a growing problem in the industrialized world. Smart cities must start from saving on resources to guarantee a better future to our kids.The customer is a manufacturer of waste compactor trucks looking for a solution to optimize operations to his customers (municipalities).
Each truck has onboard a simple PLC controller that manages all the operations (pumps, valves and so on). The PLC provides a RS485 ModBus communication port that was available for diagnostic. Such diagnostic port has been used to retrofit the equipment wiring to Iomote X400 Edge Gateway (3G + GPS version).
X400 Edge Gateway is fully compatible with the Arduino IDE and leveraging on the Arduino community has been quite simple to download a ModBus library and to adapt the library to the specific PLC.
X400 Edge Gateway provides a set of commands to send telemetry data and alarms to the Cloud backend (Mymote). In this way the complexity of connectivity, security and management of offline messages is completely hidden. The Arduino app reads Telemetry data (GPS position and few parameters coming from the PLC) every 30 seconds and sends those data every 5 minutes via 3G to the Cloud.Special events (for ex. alarms coming from the PLC) are sent in realtime to the Cloud in order to activate the right procedures to avoid the truck to be stuck somewhere waiting for reparation.
X400 Edge Gateway data (telemetry and alarms) are provided directly on the Microsoft Azure Service Bus and ready to any integration with standard tools (for. ex PowerBI) or for custom applications (web/mobile) and dashboards.
Security is not an option for this kind of professional IoT projects and X400 Edge Gateway has been Microsoft Azure Certified as guarantee of respect of the max security standards available today. What about tomorrow? No problem, because on Mymote cloud is possible to update remotely each device with the new OS versions provided by Iomote.
It took 4 weeks to create this project. The longest part has been the ModBus interface with the PLC and after that data was flowing smoothly to the Cloud.The main benefits are:
- A better management of maintenance reduced the average unavailability of these expensive trucks
- Control of efficiency of operations and operators
- Provide a platform with API in open format (Open Data) to let developers integrate into Smart City applications