Manitowoc has announced The Morey Corporation, Woodridge, Ill., as the supplier of the Telematics Control Unit that forms an essential part of its new CraneSTAR asset management system. CraneSTAR transmits vital data related to the crane’s operating conditions to a central database where equipment managers can monitor data from any web-enabled device.
Scott Blair, director of global telematics at Manitowoc, Manitowoc, Wis., said the company looked at both technological and practical advantages when selecting a provider for this critical telematics component.
“We chose to work with Morey for the TCU because we were impressed with the capability and durability of the technology,” he said. “The unit is extremely rugged and able to withstand even the toughest environments. Plus, it can tap into more data than equivalent units and offers better communication capabilities.”
The TCU is fitted to the crane and connects to the CANBus or R232 system to obtain information on the crane’s position and activity from its major operating functions. This information is then transmitted via either GSM or satellite to a central hosting server where users can access it.
In addition to offering dual wireless communication capabilities, GSM and satellite, the TCU features GPS technology that allows users to see the exact location and recent working positions of their Manitowoc cranes. They can also use this function to ‘geofence’ the equipment, defining the areas the crane can travel. This is a useful feature if owners are concerned that equipment may be transported across unsuitable terrain or into unsafe environments.
Greater processing power and multiple inputs/outputs are two additional benefits of the CraneSTAR TCU. The unit has multiple digital/analog inputs allowing it to collect more data from the crane. Having multiple inputs/outputs also means that a single TCU can be used on a variety of different crane designs. The CraneSTAR TCU has a hardened, sealed aluminum enclosure and measures only 168 mm x 225 mm x 55 mm (6.85 in x 9.15 in x 2.25 in). It has a total of 12 inputs and two outputs and a 32-bit processor at its system core.
Emad Issac, chief technology officer at Morey, said having a single component was much easier than having tailored devices for different cranes. “Manitowoc was very committed to have one standard TCU for its cranes,” he said. “It’s clear that for ease of installation and speed of maintenance a single TCU is necessary, but the company also needs that unit to cover its diverse product range. The benefit of the Morey component is its flexibility that is suited to the company’s full range of mobile, lattice and tower cranes.”