Volvo Group has implemented a new generation IoT tracking solution in its Trucks plant located in Blainville (in the north of France) to track and locate trucks during the production and customization process. This innovative solution has significantly improved the supply chain operations of the factory. The solution is based on a LoRaWAN® private network deployed and managed using the ThingPark™ IoT Platform from Actility, world leader in Low-Power Wide-Area Networks (LPWAN) industrial-grade connectivity solutions for the Internet of Things, and using tracking devices from Abeeway, its subsidiary specialized in low-power geolocation.
“Beyond the technical challenge, I am really proud of the deployed solution because operators have adopted it at 100% from day 1. We have worked hard to integrate this innovation in the existing processes and in the legacy factory applications. Operators adoption is a key success factor to implement innovative solutions in a factory”
says Julien Bertolini, IoT expert at Volvo.
Multiplying benefits with LoRaWAN®
Volvo Group is one of the world’s largest truck manufacturers and includes several brands such as Volvo Trucks, Renault Trucks, UD Trucks and Mack Trucks. Its Blainville plant realized that workers were wasting hours of their time everyday looking for vehicles on the huge parking areas of the factory, having to track between 5000 and 6000 vehicles in a plant which produces 72 vehicles and assembles over 230 cabs daily for the entire Renault Trucks and the medium duty Volvo Trucks ranges. Considering that trucks can be moved several times during the day and that the location of each truck was done manually on paper, the operations were significantly slowed down.
After testing a dozen of available solutions and devices, Volvo chose to solve this problem by placing Abeeway’s GPS Industrial Trackers inside every truck going through the assembly line. Each time a truck moves or stops, the movement is tracked, and the position is sent to Actility’s ThingPark LoRaWAN Network Server using LoRaWAN® , which is a global communication standard and one of the leading wireless networks technologies designed to allow long-range communication at a low data rate, reducing power and cost of transmission, and targeting key IoT requirements such as bi-directional communication, end-to-end security, mobility and localization services.
“Within the framework of this project we looked for all possible solutions. With the project team we tested multiple devices and the solution that seemed the most interesting to implement was the solution that uses Abeeway trackers, since we were able to work with them and they offered us the best precision. It is very clear that what we are interested in being able to track our vehicles with maximum precision to avoid wasting too much time searching for them, so the Abeeway tracking solution was the most efficient for us”
says Pascal Cury, Project Manager at the Blainville Volvo factory.
Even though the implementation of this solution has meant adding a new step to the assembly line to be able to incorporate and quickly configure the trackers, the time spent to do this is nothing compared to the time that was used before trying to find each truck, also offering a considerable cost cut, allowing to save an estimate over a hundred of thousands euros per year only for this factory plant.
The Abeeway and Actility solution has also been chosen for being applicable to various Volvo Group factories worldwide, including plants in the United States, Belgium, Switzerland and Brazil, allowing the factory in Blainville to work as a pilot project for future deployments and fast use case enablement.
End-to-end solution with full geolocation capabilities
Leveraging LoRaWAN’s long range and low power capabilities, Abeeway allows you to efficiently locate assets and to ensure people’s safety. The devices perfectly work both outdoors and indoors thanks to their multi-technology geolocation system, and they offer the best autonomy on the market due to extremely low power consumption, allowing continuous use of the devices during years without having to worry about their maintenance. The smart Abeeway trackers are not only precise and resistant, but also durable and low-cost.
Actility offers the most powerful enterprise IoT connectivity solution: ThingPark Enterprise. The ThingPark Location platform transforms the location data into actionable information. Then using a unique APIs set, the location data can be easily integrated with third-party business applications. Volvo has implemented the PTC’s ThingWorx app, perfectly adapted to factory operations, making it extremely easy for the workers to locate each truck from mobile devices.
“Our platform allows to deploy a dedicated and fully controlled LoRaWAN network allowing fast use cases enablement. All components of the network, including trackers, gateways and data routing are managed from a unique user interface, connected to all popular clouds or applications. This helped to make the Volvo Group project much simpler, quicker to deploy, easy to operate and scalable to other factories”
says Olivier Hersent, CEO at Actility.
About Volvo Trucks
Volvo Trucks provides complete transport solutions for professional and demanding customers, offering a full range of medium to heavy duty trucks. Customer support is secured via a global network of dealers with 2,100 service points in more than 130 countries. Volvo trucks are assembled in 14 countries across the globe. In 2019 approximately 131,000 Volvo trucks were delivered worldwide. Volvo Trucks is part of Volvo Group, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of trucks, buses, construction equipment and marine and industrial engines. The Group also provides complete solutions for financing and service. Volvo Trucks´ work is based on the core values of quality, safety and environmental care. The Blainville plant is one of the Volvo Group’s main manufacturing and assembly plants. This plant produces medium Duty trucks for the Renault Trucks and Volvo Trucks brands.
Abeeway is the market leader in low power indoor & outdoor fused geolocation and a provider of disruptive IoT tracking solutions worldwide. Abeeway offers the most energy-efficient, reliable and flexible geolocation solutions using unique tracking devices and a smart Multi-technology location system optimized for long-range and low-power-consumption leveraging LoRaWAN™ connectivity. Abeeway devices are available on ThingPark Market . Abeeway is a member of the LoRa Alliance™
Actility is a world leader in Low-Power Wide-Area Networks (LPWAN) industrial-grade connectivity solutions for the Internet of Things. Actility provides its ThingPark™ platform and network technology to deploy, operate and maintain public and private wireless IoT networks within a unified, scalable and versatile network infrastructure. The vast majority of nationwide LoRaWAN® network service providers (over 50) and hundreds of companies trust ThingPark™ all over the world. Through its subsidiary Abeeway, Actility also provides patented ultra-low power tracking solutions. ThingPark Market offers the largest selection of interoperable IoT gateways, devices and applications to simplify and accelerate deployment of use cases.
Contact us here: https://www.actility.com/contact