In tough, challenging environments computer equipment must have special qualities in order to function optimally. This is especially important if the system must meet the demands of classification companies.
Cargotec is one of the providers of cargo and load handling solutions. Cargotec and its business areas Kalmar, Hiab and MacGregor are well known in the cargo and load handling industry with their products, services and solutions that support their customers in ports, at sea and on roads. Arne Vollertsen for Data Respons explains more.
While Cargotec enables smarter cargo flow with its leading cargo handling solutions and services, it also embraces industry trends like automation, robotics, electrification, and other business activities that are closely connected to digitalisation.
Connectivity is king
In all of this, connectivity is a fundamental prerequisite. Being able to connect and communicate all equipment in ports, on ships and on trucks is essential – regardless of where they might be located.
Only then can the next step be taken to design new services and open new revenue streams from remote monitoring, smart services, predictive maintenance etc.
Across all brands
This is where the box comes in. Cargotec turned to Data Respons for expert knowledge and engineering expertise in how to connect its equipment – and almost all of it across the entire range of Cargotec brands.
Anders Jansson, Sales Director Data Respons Solutions Sweden explained: “Initially Cargotec asked us to design a standard gateway to connect the truck cranes manufactured under their Hiab brand. While we were preparing that project, Cargotec continued further in focusing more strongly on digitalisation.
“That decision allowed us to broaden the scope and build a gateway to fit nearly all products across all Cargotec brands. We’ve designed all the hardware and a large part of the software of the Cargotec Gateway.”
Robust and versatile
Its model name is CE-IMX6-01 and with it Data Respons has taken gateway versatility and robustness to the extreme – as required by the customer.
The sturdiness of the device is remarkable. It is built to take a severe beating, withstand a pressure washer, and resist salt spray. Furthermore, it has an operating temperature range from -40 to +80°C, all of this to enable it to function under extreme conditions.
On top of that, the Cargotec Gateway is multi-lingual in various ways. It speaks a number of tech languages: it can communicate via Bluetooth, WiFi, ethernet, and has a 4G modem for connecting to cellular networks.
Also, it can connect from nearly any location around the world. The gateway has been certified for more than 45 regions and connects to a telecom network via an e-SIM card, a dedicated chip with the same functionality as a conventional physical SIM card.
But ruggedness and global connectivity are by far not the only features that make the gateway a major achievement in the Cargotec journey towards industrial digitalisation.
Without being able to fit into the Cargotec IoT ecosystem, it wouldn’t be worth much, and in this respect Data Respons has taken the role of Cargotec’s development partner with also other responsibilities than the design of the gateway.
Hans Christian Lønstad, CTO of Data Respons Solutions explained: “We’ve worked closely together with Cargotec engineers and data specialists to find the optimal technical solutions, all the way from crane to cloud. We’ve worked with Cargotec on a number of issues well beyond technical issues related to the gateway.
“Together we’ve developed an understanding of how to combine hardware and software on different levels to make the IoT ecosystem work as a whole. We’ve been involved – and still are – as advisors on how the entire system should behave technically to be able to live up to the long-term plans and visions of Cargotec in regards to IoT.”
According to Hans Christian Lønstad, this holistic approach has been key to the successful development of the CE-IMX6-01 Gateway, demonstrated by its large production volume.
The overall goal is to handle the increasing cargo volumes crisscrossing our globe with as little environmental impact as possible. And since Cargotec is serving industries that cover the majority of the world’s gross domestic product, this can make a huge difference.