Building an Industrial Grade Smart Level Sensing Application

The Challenge

Implementing an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is an expensive proposition, as it should be because an ERP solution typically manages all critical and commercial functions of a business. Automation between processes enables data sharing and enhanced visibility to make better and efficient business decisions. Another form of ERP automation involves the incorporation of new technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT).

The agriculture industry faces many supply-chain challenges. Real-time visibility on the condition, quality, and quantity in silos is at the top of that list. Today, keeping track of those variables is mostly a manual effort, which risks human error and injury. So, when a large ERP vendor needed to give its agricultural clients better visibility into their supply chain, the company called on Lab651 to develop and integrate IoT technology with its platform.

Our Solution

Lab651 developed a unique level-sensing technology that gives the ERP’s agricultural clients complete visibility into their products in silos. The sensor incorporates a highly accurate (cm accuracy) radar range finder that can scan the undulating levels of products in bins and silos, calculate levels or volumes, and put that real-time data into the ERP system through the cellular network—in other words, automating ERP through IoT.

The vendor’s agricultural clients are now seeing greater inventory accuracy while simultaneously reducing human capital risk. The company is providing real-time environmental conditions that lead to less spoilage. Its clients are seeing improved vendor-managed inventory replenishment and improved capacity planning. These are all value-added services made possible through real-time data visibility for the ERP vendor, leading to additional license sales.