TellingTank from the technical point of view20.12.2018
Actemium colleagues Peter van Deursen, project manager, and Mark Kleuskens, lead engineer hardware, talk about the technical aspects of the innovation TellingTank.
TellingTank connects to the needs of breweries
Mark is responsible for the development of the TellingTank sensor. Peter is project manager of the innovation: ‘‘Actemium has a rich history in automating breweries and beer delivery trucks. I saw the needs of breweries to optimise their logistics of tank beer delivery. We explored the market and didn’t find a suitable solution. We saw technical similarities with our already existing connectivity platform for surface water in the Netherlands. That is how we came up with the plan to make a smart sensor in the tank. This way breweries know what’s on stock at their customers, i.e. tank beer users.’’
Technique behind TellingTank
TellingTank is a connectivity platform to improve the logistics of tank beer transport. By installing a smart sensor on the tank, Actemium determines the content of the tank. The working principle of TellingTank is based on Boyle’s Law: the specially designed valve releases a certain amount of air out of the tank. The smart sensor measures the pressure drop versus the volume which is related to the air content in the tank. So, beer content = tank size -/- air content.
Advantages of TellingTank sensor
Mark explains: ‘’Each Point Of Consumption (POC, i.e. tank beer user) gets its own data connection to a central database. In this database we collect all customer data through the use of the smart sensor, such as tank level, temperature and pressure. We can also connect external sensors to collect extra data. Extra data such as room and cool unit temperature and compressor failure. Our alarm software module detects deviations of the collected data. Automatically maintenance departments are warned before tank beer users notice a problem. Also, the sensor is not in contact with beer, so cleaning and contamination are not an issue. The sensor is easy to install and suitable for every tank beer installation. It tells you the content, temperature and pressure of the tank at any moment. With our technology the storage quality of tank beer is guaranteed.’’
Input for planning tools and TellingTank bar-app
The TellingTank application shows a brewery all the current tank beer levels of their customers, worldwide. And it provides input for the Actemium planning tool, or for any existing planning tool, to plan the most efficient route.
The tank beer user can also benefit from all this data. Actemium developed a bar-app that is specially made for tank beer users and their employees. This app contains all relevant data of the tank beer.
Combining TellingTank delivery unit and smart sensor
Peter says: ‘’We also developed a delivery unit, which is placed in a tank beer truck. Each unit is connected with a database, via 4G or USB. By using the TellingTank application you can monitor exactly the amount of delivered beer.’’
By using the smart sensor and delivery unit, the TellingTank application contains all the relevant tank beer data. TellingTank can be used as a standalone application with modules like ordering, planning, and routing. All the data can be interfaced with existing programmes such as order intake, invoicing and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software or with planning tools.
Mark concludes: ‘‘With TellingTank, breweries are always in control of their tank beer. They will reduce costs of tank beer deliveries and have control of the quality of tank beer, which is stored at the POC’s.’’
Would you like to know more about TellingTank? Read our page Beer & beverages or read the interview with our business developer, Michiel van Vlijmen: ‘TellingTank: what is it and for whom is it interesting to implement?’ You can also contact him via:
+31 (0)6 21 20 66 83