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Satellite tracking improves machine performance

First publishedin Aggregates Business Europe
2008 March April
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Tarmac vehicle at work
Tarmac is equipping 1000 of its aggregates fleet with Masternaut's satellite tracking system

Tarmac UK has announced plans to fit vehicles in its aggregates fleet with Masternaut satellite tracking to improve performance

Tarmac's UK Aggregates Products Division has announced earlier this year that it has signed a new deal that will help to improve delivery of materials to its customers.

The company is to equip its 1350 vehicle fleet with the Masternaut satellite and mobile tracking system, which will be rolled out over the next three months. The system has been specifically developed for Tarmac to provide web-based tracking.

According to Tarmac, the system will allow the company to improve productivity and efficiency, as well as customer service.

Tarmac will use Masternaut to track vehicle movements in real time enabling the company to boost customer service and operational productivity and efficiency. Using Masternaut reporting, the company will be able to monitor and obtain specific information about each vehicle as well as being able to answer customer queries about their aggregate orders by accessing real-time information provided by the tracking solution.

Central to the Masternaut system is a mobile collection unit (MCU) which gathers a variety of data about the vehicle. The MCU then transmits the information via the GPRS telephone network to Masternaut's data collection centre from where the company or customers can then gain access to the details.

The system can be tailored to the needs of the customer by linking the MCU to a variety of inputs.

Linking the tachograph to the MCU can give information about driving times, speed and the number of stops and adding GPS technology will enable the location of the vehicle to be added. This kind of information is not only important for tracking a vehicle's operating hours to manage the servicing and maintenance but also allows companies to ensure their operatives are working within the guidelines of the Working Time Directive.

Employee ID keys mean that only authorised drivers can use the vehicles and will recorded whether the use is for business or personal purposes. The system can also be used to track stolen equipment and speed the recovery process.

Addition of a data terminal allows two-way messaging between the vehicle and the company's dispatch or control centre. While integrating navigational software into the system enables deliveries to be made more efficiently. Hand held PDAs can also be linked to the system to give real-time information about the hand over of deliveries to the customer.

Other inputs can be added through the MCU CAN bus technology to give information about the status of the load, such as weight and temperature.

"Delivering on time, every time is a critical objective for aggregates suppliers. Customers need to know that their orders have been dispatched and when they will arrive on site. Likewise Tarmac does not want its vehicles arriving on site and waiting excessive periods before tipping asphalt or ready mixed concrete," explained Masternaut Three X corporate accounts manager Mark Leavy.

"The solution we have developed with Tarmac provides precise real-time information that will benefit both the Aggregates Products division and its customers."

It is expected that the system will be fitted to more vehicles in Tarmac's aggregates fleet by the end of the year to further benefit productivity and efficiency.

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