The device also allows operators to set miles per gallon targets, hours worked per litre and can detect leakages in fuel tanks
Nottingham City Transport (NCT) has awarded a contract to Fuellink Systems install smart data collection devices on the latest environmentally friendly bio-gas buses in Nottingham.
The all new bio-gas buses have been fitted with the capability to integrate with an Internet of Things (IoT)-enabled device called ‘Vinie’, which the Bellshill-based fuel management firm developed with support from the Scottish Innovation Centre for Sensor and Imaging Systems (Censis).
Vinie is a small piece of equipment fitted to the dashboard of buses, allowing fleet operators to monitor and store a range of crucial datasets obtained directly from the vehicle’s engine management computer, such as odometer readings and fuel usage which enable accurate and automatic reporting of data.
Vinie also allows operators to set miles per gallon targets, hours worked per litre, and can detect leakages in fuel tanks. As the whole system is automated and utilises Bluetooth to register bus details with a central system, fleets become more efficient and operators can save time on refuelling and other traditionally manual duties within depots, the company said.
Fuellink hopes to capitalise on a wider increased demand from operators wishing to grow their fleets and replace older models with smarter, more efficient buses.
“The increasingly important role IoT plays in the transport industry is well recognised and Fuellink’s Vinie goes a long way to helping us take advantage of huge amounts of data,” said Gary Mason, engineering director, Nottingham City Transport.
“We see technology like this as instrumental in our drive to create ever-greater efficiencies and having vehicles which are ready-made to adopt smart devices is the logical step forward to help facilitate this process.”
The device was originally retrofitted to two operational buses as part of a trial with NCT, which has since resulted in an order of 23 new Vinie enabled bio-gas buses. An additional 30 NCT bio-gas buses will be retrofitted with the technology as part of the deal.
“By demonstrating the proof of concept, we could pilot the product with a number of companies, showcasing the benefits of the device, and have since landed significant contracts, including Nottingham City Transport,” added John Ashley, Director at Fuellink Systems.
“At the moment, we’re focused on introducing the product to local authorities, bus operators and haulage firms, but in the future, we hope to diversify and allow companies across industries to take advantage of Vinie’s versatile data monitoring and storage capabilities.”
Fuellink’s other customers include Stirling Council and Leicestershire County Council; Lothian Buses, First Bus and hauliers WH Malcolm and Gist (UK).
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FUELlink is initially focusing on the bus operator, haulage and local authority markets, which all operate large fleets of vehicles