Nexiot develops sensors to monitor temperature of dangerous goods in Bertschi Group tank containers

Industrial Internet of Things and asset digitisation pioneer Nexiot is working closely with Bertschi Group to tailor its zero-maintenance smart sensor system to allow real time customer updates

Zurich, Switzerland, Friday 28th April 2017 – Nexiot AG is customising its zero-maintenance smart sensor system for Bertschi Group’s tank containers, to monitor the temperature of dangerous goods and help ensure safe delivery of consignments.

The data is then sent to a control system, enabling Bertschi Group to monitor the temperature of the product in the tank, as well as the steam pipes which are used to heat the cargo, in real time.

Nexiot’s smart sensors harvest energy from the environment, which makes them self-sustaining, and enables them to update the control system with messages down to every five minutes.

Bertschi is a global logistics service provider for the chemical industry, specialising in both liquids and dry bulk products, and transports hazardous cargo, some of which need to travel within a specific temperature band.

“Any means by which we can further raise the bar regarding safety gets priority at Bertschi, and having continuous and detailed information about the containers allows us to be certain that everything is well within safe operating conditions,” said Markus Berner, Head of Digital Logistics, Bertschi Group.

“Automated alerts on deviations provide us with one more layer of safety on top of all the existing procedures and mechanisms.

“The very same measurements are also invaluable for guaranteeing that the cargo, which often includes delicate chemical compounds, reaches its destination within the optimal temperature band and in perfect condition.

“We have very tough requirements for the capabilities, ruggedness, cost, and maintainability of devices in the field. In my opinion, particularly regarding energy autonomy and frequency of updates, the technology of Nexiot speaks for itself.”

Nexiot’s Director Marketing and Sales Daniel MacGregor said the sensor system, which is also being installed across the entire fleet of rail wagons for wagon hire giant VTG, was ideal for mobile assets with no native power sources.

“Connecting rail wagon and tank container fleets to extract critical data brings similar challenges and opportunities, as both asset types are non-powered,” he said.

“Our self-sustaining technology has overcome the battery problems which were a major barrier to monitoring these sorts of mobile assets and made critical data available in real time, so that our customers can make informed business decisions and ensure their cargo arrives safely and on time.”

Nexiot is trialling a new system of self-sufficient sensors, mounted onto the tank containers, communicating temperature data wirelessly to its Machine to Machine (M2M) communication devices, also installed on the tank containers.

Berner said that Bertschi is seeing increased demand from customers for real-time updates and estimates, who use the data to optimise their own logistics chain.

“Nexiot provides a full-featured but specialised platform which can be integrated with sector-specific software,” he said.

“This is in line with our digitisation strategy – more data all by itself is of limited use; it is the links and connections that bring real value.”

Nexiot last month announced it is equipping the entire European fleet of VTG Aktiengesellschaft (VTG AG) wagons with its smart sensors.

The modules relay updates including location, impact events, border crossings, mileage, and more.

Nexiot will be showcasing its cutting-edge technology at the transport logistic exhibition in Munich, Germany from 9th to 12th May 2017 on stand B2.338.


Daniel MacGregor, Director Marketing, & Sales, Nexiot

Daniel MacGregor, Director Marketing, & Sales, Nexiot

Markus Berner, Head of Digital Logistics, Bertschi Group

Markus Berner, Head of Digital Logistics, Bertschi Group

Nexiot's self-sustaining smart sensors are being adapted for Bertschi Group's tank containers

Nexiot’s self-sustaining smart sensors are being adapted for Bertschi Group’s tank containers

About Nexiot AG

Nexiot sprang from ETH Zürich, one of the world’s top technical universities. The company is built on over ten years of research in complex systems, big data algorithms, energy harvesting, and ultra low-power embedded technology.

Now their focus is on interconnecting industrial objects, using maintenance free modules for monitoring and security.

The company is leading the IoT / Industry 4.0 revolution with its power independent fleet communication solutions with fully integrated operations and sensors.

It couples remote connectivity with powerful business logic and interfaces to enterprise software, to facilitate mission critical information management through the logistics chain.

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About Bertschi

Bertschi is a global logistics service provider for the chemical industry, specialised in both liquids and dry bulk products. The company employs 2,500 staff members at 60 locations in 31 different countries worldwide.

Bertschi is a family business, founded in 1956 with headquarters in Switzerland, and has an annual turnover of USD 700 million.

The company owns 28,000 tank and dry bulk containers, 1,200 trucks and 30 container terminals and warehousing hubs for chemical and plastic products. In Europe, Bertschi is market leader in intermodal transport of chemicals on rail and water. Furthermore, Bertschi has developed into a leading global provider of isotank transport and value added logistics services for the chemical industry.

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