Forklift (Lift Truck) Telemetry, Vision & GPS
Lift trucks used to be about brawn, now it will be about intelligence, automation and software...and, the future is closer than you think.
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Yale Materials Handling Corporation markets a full line of materials handling lift truck products and services, including electric, gas, LP-gas and diesel powered lift trucks; narrow aisle, very narrow aisle and motorized hand trucks. Yale has a comprehensive service offering including Yale Vision…
- Company Quicklook
Surely you remember the line from the Planet Fitness commercial: “I lift things up and put them down.”
It’s spoken by a brawny weightlifter with all the finesse of a crowbar to a windshield.
You might think of your fleet of lift trucks in the same way: all brawn, no brains.
They pick things up and put them down. What could be simpler, right?
Think again. Today’s lift trucks - and the lift truck technology on the drawing board - are anything but simple.
Sure, lift trucks still pick things up and put them down, but they also collect a wealth of information about those lifts while tracking the performance of the operator and monitoring the mechanical and power systems.
And, they are no longer machines unto themselves: The lift truck is now capable of communicating in real time with other warehouse and manufacturing systems.
In an era of expanded digital networks, smart connected devices and integrated systems, businesses are turning to data-driven intelligence to guide decisions.
“If you don’t know about it, you can’t fix it,” says Mick McCormick, vice president of warehouse solutions for Yale Materials Handling Corp.
“As information becomes increasingly important to fleet management, the availability of telemetry data is critical to improving efficiency and our customer’s bottom line.”
That is already apparent in telemetry programs that collect and transmit operational data, such as the Yale Vision wireless asset management system.
While many facilities have yet to use fleet data to its fullest potential, improvements to its telemetry technology is among Yale’s priorities for the future.
“When applied to fleets of equipment, this data can help bring lower costs and competitive benefits to decrease a customer’s total cost of operations.”
By monitoring a variety of metrics including idle time, safety procedures and impacts, the use of Yale’s telemetry system can help operations manage costs, protect assets and optimize productivity.
Yale also plans to add a satellite-based global positioning system (GPS) feature to its vision system.
That feature will allow customers to know what their lift trucks are doing, where they have been and any faults that have occurred.
This will allow them to uncover insights about high-risk collision areas and route inefficiency, providing actionable real-time data that enables informed, responsive management decisions.
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Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.