Atlas Copco, founded in 1873, is a Swedish company that supplies low, middle and high-pressure compressors, vacuum pumps, nitrogen generators, construction tools, lampposts and generating sets. The 50,000 employees work worldwide for Atlas Copco, which operates in almost every sector, from healthcare to aviation.
Sustainability and efficiency
Atlas Copco gives high priority to sustainability and efficiency. To make the maintenance of its compressors as efficient and sustainable as possible, Atlas Copco's service division has developed the IoT platform SMARTLINK. SMARTLINK serves as the smart monitoring system of every one of Atlas Copco's compressed air pumps and monitors the use, condition and efficiency of the machines.
Preventing high costs
"After all, if a problem remains unnoticed it can result in the stalling of an entire production line", Bob Rigouts from Atlas Copco explains. "In turn, emergency repairs can lead to high costs and unscheduled downtime. In order to avoid this, we developed SMARTLINK, a network of connected machines that transmit machine data."
SMARTLINK collects and analyses
SMARTLINK optimises processes Atlas Copco started creating the IoT platform SMARTLINK in 2013, with the intention of optimising the maintenance process and energy consumption and to prevent expensive emergency repairs and outages. "Now all the devices we make are 'connected'", says Rigouts. "Among other things, this avoids having to actually go to the device. Without a connection, someone has to go to the compressor every time to check the status of the machine. This requires a logbook with company hours and maintenance requirements. SMARTLINK collects and analyses the information."
Notifications on mobile phones
To get notifications to the right person, Atlas Copco approached CM Belgium. CM Belgium offers the technology needed to reach mobile phone users via, for instance, text messaging, push notifications and mobile payments. Users can send messages to almost any mobile phone in the world via API connections and online tools, providing they have the number.
SMARTLINK sends the notifications that are now generated by the compressors to mobile phones of those who use the devices via text messaging and push notifications. “Every text message and push notification the devices send reaches both us and our customers via CM. Early warnings like these provide the opportunity to react timely and to plan proactively."
Since the beginning of this year, Atlas Copco has been using CM's Hybrid Messaging, which cleverly combines the use of push notifications and text messages. If a push message does not arrive in a user's app, Hybrid Messaging automatically reverts to text messaging. Push notifications are preferred. These are, after all, cheaper to use than text messaging. Should a push message not be delivered, text messages can always be reverted to.
- Learn more on Hybrid Messaging
White label app Notifire
“We use CM’s app Notifire to deliver notifications via push. We have white labelled these and different channels can be created for different reports in this. For instance, we can exactly set who must receive which information and when, so it is completely personalised. All the user has to do is install the app and the rest is done automatically, including the fall-back to text messaging. That way, we can be certain that no important status updates remain unnoticed.”
Making SMARTLINK even smarter
The connected Atlas Copco devices transmit 1500 measuring points per second. Atlas Copco analyses this data, as a result of which 7000 text messages and 500 push notifications with status reports are sent by CM's platform worldwide every day. In the long term, Rigouts aspires to make SMARTLINK even smarter with so-called 'smart events'. “Now, the app is still a notification channel", he explains. "Ultimately, in addition to the standard status updates, it will also be used to send advisory messages. So, not only will the problem be shown but also the possible solution."
Innovation is often a process of cooperation. We have combined their expertise to increase the customer experience exponentially
‘Always open to new ideas’
Account manager Geert Vonck from CM about the cooperation with Atlas Copco: "If experience has taught us anything, it's that there is no such thing as a monopoly on bright ideas. Innovation is often a process of cooperation. At Atlas Copco, like at CM, they are always open to new ideas, wherever they come from. Both companies, which are world players, have combined their expertise to increase the customer experience exponentially.”
‘It all started with a webinar’
“It all started with a simple question: "Are you interested in following our webinar about our new hybrid solution?" Since then, we have been rolling out our hybrid solution for Atlas Copco in various countries and for different target groups. I am convinced that we can continue to expand and develop, to learn and grow in a very technologically disruptive and fast-developing world. 'Be part of it' means growing together and introducing the future successfully.”