Engine Telematics: Hatz Discusses Its new Performance Tracking Telemetry Aimed at Small Construction Equipment

engine telematics illustration

Telematics is an umbrella term for a variety of technologies and services that monitor a piece of equipment, collecting and sharing digital data on everything from systems analysis (think maintenance) to location (think theft). A telematics monitoring device would be installed on a unit or multiple units, and vested parties would be able to monitor those machines via smart devices like a computer, phone or tablet. Traditionally, machine makers (think Caterpillar) and/or some third-party OEM service providers (think HCSS) would provide a yearly or monthly telematics subscription service to contractors, but over the last few years engine makers have been getting in the game, which is opening new possibilities for this technology.

Motorenfabrik Hatz is a German manufacturer of diesel engines, based in Ruhstorf an der Rott, Germany (in Bavaria), with its North American headquarters in Waukesha, Wisconsin. The brand is famous for its compact, lightweight and robust engines that are used in just about every type of light construction equipment application — from Multiquip trowels and BBA water pumps to Leeboy sweeps and National Signal hybrid light towers.

These are not categories of equipment that usually have telematics service options.

“Hatz’s Performance Tracking Basic service is primarily aimed at companies that want to use or already use a fleet management solution and now want to integrate information of small and compact equipment into that system,” explains Dr. Maren Hellwig, head of digital business development with Motorenfabrik Hatz GmbH and Co. KG. “Our engines can be connected to common fleet management software systems via standard interface AEMP 2.0. Once integrated, the engine’s operating data can be called up such as fuel consumption, operating hours, error codes and more. This allows machine scheduling or maintenance intervals to be optimized, and data updates are done every 15 minutes.”

Hatz Performance Tracking is ideal for rental and private fleets alike. All that’s needed is a Hatz IoT module and a software license. The former can be installed on all electronically controlled engines — both for Hatz drives and those from third-party manufacturers. Standardized CAN network protocols are used. Owners and operators can track engine status, engine speed, operation hours and fuel consumption. This technology can also work in concert with other tracking technology and telematics modules.

Here's a packaged Hatz IoT Module

“Hatz Performance Tracking can either interact with other control units or sensor systems of the machine or can be a stand-alone solution,” says Hellwig. “Our solution is capable of extracting data from not only the customer CAN bus system but also from the diagnostics CAN bus system. Thus, we can provide deep diagnostic information which optimizes service needs. Additionally, our Hatz Performance Tracking licenses adapt to the customer’s needs in terms of their digitization journeys. Our goal is to examine individual needs and match our solution accordingly.”

With this Hatz telematics service, fleet owners can maximize machine uptime and security on ancillary machine categories like trowels, light towers, saws, compaction equipment and various drills. It also goes beyond maintenance. The connection of the engine data enables performance- and order-related billing opportunities. A rental house could easily track real-time utilization data from a piece of equipment, making flat-rate or fixed-term contracts a thing of the past. Image this sales pitch: We only bill for the actual time the machine is used.

“Via our IoT module, we can also enable the provision of additional functions or individual extensions for compact equipment with over-the-air updates,” notes Hellwig. “Regardless of the license model, however, Hatz Performance Tracking always works easily via plug and play. Mount the Hatz IoT module on the machine, wire it to the engine control unit — no external antenna is required — run the Hatz Connection Check via our web app and register the engine in the Digital Solutions Manager administration platform. After the initial installation and setup process, customers will be able to read out data and gain useful information.”

An individual Hatz IoT module kit has a retail price of around $500 and is simple to install in most powered applications. Which one is right for your fleet?

“We recommend that our customers specify their trouble points,” says Hellwig. “What should be solved and what added value should be generated? To be able to support our customers in the decision-making process in the best possible way, we offer personal advice from our sales team. In addition, customers have the option of using our product configurator to get the suitable software license recommended via a selection of specifications.”

Keith Gribbins is publisher of Compact Equipment.

Hatz Performance Tracking Is Available in Basic, Advanced and Pro Packages

Performance Tracking Basic is primarily aimed at companies that already use a fleet management solution and now want to integrate information of small and compact equipment into that system. Engines can be connected to common fleet management software systems via standard interface AEMP 2.0. Once integrated, the engine’s operating data can be called up such as fuel consumption, operating hours display, error codes and many more. This allows machine scheduling or maintenance intervals to be optimized. Data updates are done every 15 minutes.

Performance Tracking Advanced provides machine operators with a complete solution from a single source to get started with fleet management. The operating information of the connected Hatz engines can be displayed directly in the Hatz IoT Dashboard. This makes it possible to establish geofencing and, therefore, allows customer’s machines to be more secure against theft and misuse. With the “Alarm Manager” add-on, users are also immediately informed if their construction equipment is moved out of the prescribed area. Information in the Hatz IoT dashboard is updated every five minutes.

Performance Tracking Pro fits into the software world of demanding users — individual and without influencing the user experience. Hatz adapts the provision of its operating data to existing software systems. This allows for familiar software interfaces to remain unchanged. Users have full control over what is displayed where and when. The parameters and update rate are set individually by the customer, and Hatz integrates them as desired.