Recently, in a cutting edge IoT solution implementation, Cumberland Group used wireless sensors to automate a manual temperature recording process for a leading cold storage logistics company. By replacing analog thermometers with high resolution, digital sensors connected to a custom-built dashboard, we were able to provide facility staff with real-time visibility into warehouse refrigeration conditions. As a result, the company was able to increase operational efficiency, significantly reduced the risk of product loss, and save $4.4 million per year in non-value-added labor.
Despite its benefits, the process of implementing the RF sensor-based solution meant dealing with obstacles in long-term power consumption, network resiliency, and scalability. Environmental interference with sensor signals made the deployment process complex and required a large number of gateways to be installed on-site, driving up the cost of network infrastructure needed to support the additional hardware.
Cumberland Group went to work on these limitations and partnered with Wirepas, implementing their mesh connectivity protocol to efficiently deploy mesh enabled sensors across large warehouses that would otherwise be cost prohibitive or logistically difficult to monitor with previously available sensor platforms. Reducing the customer’s overall total cost of ownership for the solution will allow for further investment in a mesh enabled network, laying the foundation for future IoT projects and reducing time to market for each new use case.
The Wirepas Mesh Connectivity protocol had the added benefit of being easy to integrate with Cumberland’s Interwovn software solution, allowing us to provide further value to the customer with historical data reporting, device health monitoring, and seamless exporting of data directly into their ERP. Combining Wirepas enabled sensors with Interwovn can impact companies across a variety of industries (supply chain, industrial, retail, and healthcare) that are looking to scale device networks across multiple locations. Visualizing these data points can help customers monitor and make impactful business decisions through data analytics.
Currently, our team is building a solution for vehicle asset tracking by leveraging the Wirepas Positioning Engine to assist a vehicle distribution company manage their inventory more efficiently. Up until now, their staff has been manually tracking VIN, model and color information, as well as where cars are parked on the lot with an Excel document.
Our solution would utilize sensor tags and anchor nodes deployed with our proprietary gateway to track the movements of vehicle inventory as they are checked-in from manufacturing plants, re-positioned around the lots, and finally released to dealerships. With an “always-on” live view, the Wirepas-enabled inventory system automatically updates where each tagged car is maintained on the distribution lot, reducing additional expenses incurred from lost productivity due to staff losing track of where certain cars are located. The positioning engine allows us to provide additional sensor capabilities where traditional solutions using RFID fall short – fully automating the inventory management, measuring data points that are inaccessible via RFID tag, and keeping infrastructure costs down by eliminating the need for expensive RF reader antennas. As the size of the customer’s lots and on-site inventory scale, the Wirepas solution becomes much more technically feasible since we can simply continue to add low-cost, off-the-shelf sensor hardware to the network.