Mixed Fleet Telematics Standard to Drive More Connections in Heavy Equipment

By James Brehm, CEO and Chief Strategist  |  November 13, 2014

The Association of Equipment Management Professionals and Association of Equipment Manufacturers recently collaborated to produce a new industry-wide standard to provide end users with more OEM equipment data and easier access. This telematics standard is targeted to end users, including contractors, fleet managers, rental managers, and dealers/distributors, as well as OEMs focused on construction and industrial heavy equipment.

The AEM/AEMP Telematics API Standard expands the original AEMP Telematics Standard to include 19 data fields and 42 fault codes. The goal of the standard is to allow end user owners of mixed fleets to better manage and analyze information across their fleets regardless of manufacturer. 

The new standard allows owners to remotely monitor conditions such fuel level, machine hours, and a number of other variables. That data can automatically be fed into enterprise management systems to make sure mission-critical equipment is operational when users are absolutely depending on it to be up and running.  Visibility as a result of remote connectivity gives owners insight into issues like how to minimize inefficient and costly idle time. It gives maintenance personnel advance warning so they can prevent problems before they occur.

Managing warranty terms and adhering to service contracts are a major concern for fleet owners.  Owners need to extend the life of assets as long as possible while minimizing operating and repair costs. These new telematics standards give fleet owners a comprehensive way to ensure their entire fleet is in compliance with all warranties and service contract terms.

The API standard gives equipment owners the ability to take advantage of fleet-wide, cross-manufacturer data integration capabilities to their existing business systems. This allows the fleet owner to eliminate swivel-chair operations – constantly pivoting between equipment management and tracking platforms – and provides one, fully integrated platform that seamlessly connects their assets to their enterprise. This makes it possible to implement user-friendly dashboards to track all connected fleet assets in real time, regardless of brand or type. Real-time data acquisition capabilities can be fully integrated, allowing seamless feeding previously data-starved backend systems. Additionally, outside factors, like weather and traffic conditions, can be combined to offer fleet owners more information to make better planning and deployment decisions.

This new telematics standard is of critical importance to heavy equipment rental companies.  Being able to accurately track, bill, and manage equipment and contracts is the difference between making a profit or going broke. Being able to manage the entire fleet regardless of manufacturer is mandatory.  A major equipment rental company based in the U.S. Southwest has increased fuel billing more than $1.3 million over the last year since implementing cross-fleet fuel monitoring. Now they can accurately capture fuel costs that previously had been going unbilled. Likewise, contracts that call for billing based on usage can automatically and accurately be captured and billed.

The new standard supports location-based services. Location-enabled geo-fencing allows rental fleet owners to track their equipment to reduce theft and to disable equipment that is outside approved contract parameters. Now the entire fleet can be accurately tracked. 

But it’s not just end users that are impacted. OEMs and solution providers will also benefit from this standard. Currently, heavy equipment manufacturers have made significant investments in telematics solutions focused on their own equipment. However, most of their customers operate mixed-manufacturer fleets. So their solution has had limited value. As a result of the standard, now OEMs can offer support for other manufacturers and equipment types, offering greater extensibility of their current solutions. Likewise, it makes it easier for telematics solution providers to add additional equipment types, significantly increasing market opportunities.

Fleet and asset tracking solutions are one of the hot areas in M2M, with significant traction and escalating connection rates. The heavy equipment vertical market just got a major boost from AEP and AEMP. This is an example of two standards organizations working together to create a standard that will drive significant value for its constituents and the M2M telematics industry.

James Brehm is founder and chief technology evangelist at James Brehm & Associates.


 Telematics Standard Data Fields

  • Equipment information
    • Equipment make
    • Equipment model
    • Equipment ID
    • Serial number
  • Location
  • Cumulative operating hours
  • Amount of fuel used
  • Amount of fuel used in the last 24 hours
  • Distance traveled
  • Description of fault
  • Air temperature
  • Cumulative idle hours
  • Percent of fuel remaining
  • Is engine running
  • Is switch on
  • Cumulative power take off hours
  • Average daily load factor
  • Maximum daily speed
  • Cumulative load count
  • Cumulative payload totals
  • Cumulative active regeneration hours 

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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