Globalisation, digitalisation, cost pressure - DTG packaging logistics in upheaval
Real-time tracking of sensitive goods with the Transport Data Logger Freight Guard
Companies today transport machinery and equipment - whether new or used - all over the world. Goods are transported by plane, train, ship or truck depending on the destination, costs and delivery date.
DTG Verpackungslogistik GmbH packs machines and factory components carefully and makes sure they are protected as much as possible to ensure flawless delivery. For optimal protection against corrosion, it first equips all machines and factory components with desiccant, wraps them in a stable aluminum-PE composite film and seals them tightly.
Wooden boxes with accurately matched dimensions serve as the outer shell. "These measures are essential", explains Jürgen Gassert, Managing Director of DTG Verpackungslogistik GmbH. Yet, this does not guarantee that the machines will actually reach their destination intact and undamaged, because there is still the risk that the crates are opened or improperly handled on the way.
Oftentimes, customs reopens the box. After the customs officers open the protective film for control purposes, there is no guarantee that it will be sealed tightly again afterwards.
When the machines journey continues, should it be exposed to moisture - be it air humidity, seawater or rain - the corrosion process begins. If this is the case, the machine or factory components could reach their destination in an unhealthy condition.
The parts damaged by corrosion must be replaced and the machine repaired before it can be put into operation. In extreme cases, this means a delayed start of production at the customer's site - followed by discussions about responsibility and coverage of costs for the damage incurred.
DTG wanted to eliminate this problem and started to search for possible solutions. "We wanted to offer our customers an extended service and ensure even better customer satisfaction," Gassert emphasizes. A solution was required, which included real-time tracking with monitoring of various parameters such as temperature, and shock and vibration data of the freight. At the same time, it had to be able to monitor the integrity of the corrosion seal.
"If this information is known, we can actively intervene and avert the risk of corrosion or report damage caused during transport to our customers in advance. In this case, one of our employees travels to the current location of the machine, re-equips the packaging with desiccant and seals it tightly. This ensures that the machine arrives optimally protected and monitored", says DTG managing director Gassert.
"We wanted to offer our customers an extended service and ensure even better customer satisfaction."
Jürgen Gassert | Managing Director DTG Verpackungslogistik GmbH
"We found two viable solutions via Google," recalls Mr. Gassert. "In terms of product performance and also the price, we were ultimately convinced by the Bosch variant TDL140 Freight Guard with the associated cloud solution".
TDL140 Freight Guard is equipped with a GPS module and sensors, and enables real-time tracking of the cargo. At the same time, sensors monitor vibrations and temperatures, flagging events in a user defined inadmissible range, as well as incoming light. Incoming light means that the packaging is damaged and preservation is no longer guaranteed.
Via the cloud and the corresponding backend, DTG thus always has current information as to whether intervention is necessary. To make the application even more convenient, it is also possible to have alarm messages forwarded to the smartphone by email or SMS if predefined limits are exceeded or a light incidence occurs.
DTG already has plans to roll out the tested solution within the company. In the future, transport monitoring by TDL140 Freight Guard will be a standard item in every offer. DTG also plans to pass on the solution and its experience to other companies within the company group. Additionally, direct customer feedback from the application will help Bosch to come up with more ideas for optimizing and further developing its own products.