Tracking with Benefits: Why Location Is No Longer Enough for Asset Tracking and Smart Monitoring Solutions by Aaron Allsbrook

May 19, 2020

It is one thing to where a truck delivering cancer drugs or plasma is at any given time; it is another thing, to know the condition of those extremely expensive and sensitive assets as the travel throughout the supply chain.  Thanks to IoT, it is now possible for shippers to track the location of assets as they from various points in the physical supply chain in real time.  IoT has not, until recently, been used to track the condition of medical supplies, pharmaceuticals, produce, diary, meet or other assets within the cargo containers that are sensitive to environmental changes.

Valuable commodities can be harmed by too much exposure to light, to shocks that can cause breakage, from humidity that can have a harmful effect on products and the packaging, and more.  The ripple effects can be devastating:

  • a medical center may run low in their blood banks,
  • retail stores may not be able to make food available,
  • pharmacy won’t have the medicine to fill prescriptions.

Every participant in the supply chain can be hurt financially.

Better technologies are making it easier to deploy connected environments that track condition beyond just simple location or inventory levels. Enterprises are breaking through the barriers and implementing solutions with their supply chain partners thanks to advances in technology like:

  • Improved sensors for lower costs,
  • Smarter IoT platforms
  • Multiple wireless connectivity options
  • Localized Edge based processing and
  • Cloud scaling

Thanks to these options companies now use edge processing to filter the data transmitted by small device and identify the signals indicating a potential problem with the asset that should be communicated to the cloud.  This architecture preserves battery power and drives enormous management value into a distribution and logistics system.

Edge Data for Logistics

With ClearBlade’s edge orchestration and data “pumping” capability, IoT Asset Tracking and Smart Monitoring solutions can securely update and change an asset monitoring device’s capabilities.  This allows for dynamic adjusting rules for temperature, light, humidity, shock and more – while also tracking the location of the assets as they move through different geographies.

The control of devices remotely, using Zero-Touch OTA updates, gives enterprises the flexibility to repurpose devices to monitor different cargo at different times.  A single dashboard drives tremendous productivity while delivering real time business insights. With notifications and alerts, multiple people registered to the system can be notified when thresholds are hit, and teams can collaborate on how to solve problems in the moment. For example, if a shipment of vaccines has a truck break down, the situation inside the truck can be monitored, and teams can dispatch service to move the precious cargo to another truck, keeping the environment safe and the vaccines useable.

We can now go beyond the basics when it comes to asset tracking and smart monitoring and provide enhanced visibility – as a service which any number of participants in the supply chain can offer or subscribe to. Getting sensitive deliveries to their final destinations without damage or disruption is not only important to do but valuable to monitor. Each shipment and to also track trends over the long haul. This is IoT innovation at its finest, when sensor-based solutions and networks can dramatically enhance efficiency and economics, making life better and even saving lives.

Learn more about ClearBlade’s IoT Asset Tracking, Asset Management and Smart Monitoring solutions here –

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