Ruggedization of Telematics Devices

iWave Systems
4 min readJul 19, 2023
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Over the past decade, telematics as a technology has evolved, bringing about more data collection and predictive maintenance capabilities for OEMs and end users. It has transformed to encompass insights that impact a fleet’s operation on productivity, safety, cost efficiency, compliance, etc.

Alike on-road vehicles, telematics devices play a pivotal role in off-highway, construction, and heavy-duty trucks, helping fleet managers to monitor their equipment even in remote areas. With advanced telematics systems, fleet owners can determine whether the equipment is working optimally and provides information about wear & tear on specific components, allowing for scheduled maintenance and unforeseen breakdowns.

Telematics has also been shown to be beneficial in geofencing due to its real-time location-tracking functionality. Using geofencing, fleet managers can define a virtual stake preventing equipment from leaving or entering a defined area, improving safety and efficiency. The growing demand for telematics devices in off-highway vehicles has significantly impacted the telematics market, which is expected to reach 1,166.96 million by 2028.

Requirements of the heavy equipment industry

Potential Applications of Rugged Telematics Device

Heavy-duty trucks & off-highway vehicles have unique challenges due to their exposure to outdoor environments. A telematics device may be installed in a driver compartment or other protected location in these vehicles, or it may reside under the hood, where it is subjected to harsh environmental conditions such as extreme temperature, vibrations, shock, high humidity, and so on.

In light of such harsh weather conditions, rugged telematics devices are designed with special considerations. The IP (Ingress Protection) rating of the enclosure and connector is crucial to the performance of these devices. Ingress Protection ratings are industry-standard classifications that show the level of resistance to solids and liquids.

A telematics device for harsh environment applications must have the appropriate IP rating defined by IEC standards such as IEC 60529, IEC 60068–2, etc. An IP rating has two digits after the IP, with the first digit indicating device protection against intrusion from solids and the second digit indicating protection against intrusion from liquids. Each solid and liquid level has a different level of protection; an IP67/IP68 rating is required for most telematics applications.

The ISO standard specifies a range of IP codes that indicate how well an enclosure protects against water, dust, and other foreign objects. The IP code is a two-digit number followed by two optional letters, much like an IEC standard. The first digit of the IP code indicates the degree of protection against solid objects, while the second digit indicates the degree of protection against water.

Rugged Telematics Device with IP67 Protection Class

iWave Systems leads the embedded computing industry offering an extensive portfolio of Telematics Solutions, System on Modules, and embedded computing solutions, that meet or exceed the most stringent quality standards while providing the best turnaround time.

iWave introduced iW-RainboW-G26I: a Rugged Telematics Device designed for fleets that are exposed to dirt, debris, and harsh weather conditions and operate in industries such as construction, agriculture, oil & gas, and mining. The rugged telematics device is IP67 rated for protection against solids, dust, and water content. Furthermore, the rugged telematics device integrates multiple communication channels and data security features and can operate in extreme temperatures ranging from -40°C to +70°C.

Rugged Telematics Device
iW-RainboW-G26I: Rugged Telematics Device

Features & Benefits of the Rugged Telematics Device

  • Powered by NXP i.MX 6ULL Processor
  • Compliant with IP67 Standard
  • Multiple communication channels — Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, LTE Cat 4 / Cat M1, GPS/GLONASS/BeiDou/Galileo
  • Multiple Inputs/Outputs — 3 x CAN, 10/100 Ethernet, RS232/RS485/K-Line, USB OTG, Analog Input, Digital Input, Digital Output
  • Antenna Support — External Antenna
  • Compliance with protocols — FMS / J1939 / ISO 15765–4 / UDS / CANopen
    Integrated Hardware Secure Element
  • Add-On Security features

The Rugged Telematics Device has undergone IEC 60068-2, IEC 61000-4, ISO 16750, ISO 10605, and various other standard tests to make it suitable for operation in outdoor environments, ensuring high levels of ruggedness. Some of these tests are listed below,

In conclusion, the rugged telematics device has emerged as a game-changer in the field of off-road fleets and asset tracking. With its ability to withstand extreme temperatures, moisture, vibration, and impact, this device ensures uninterrupted data transmission and real-time monitoring of critical assets. Powered by an Arm Cortex-A7 MPU and integrated with Linux OS, the solutions allow the customer to easily integrate their custom application and edge analytics firmware.

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