New battery health monitor technology from Crown Equipment
Crown Equipment Corporation is providing relief to the heartburn associated with managing a forklift fleet powered by lead-acid batteries. Battery Health Monitor redefines battery management by combining with Crown’s InfoLink® wireless fleet and operator management system to create an integrated system that ties forklift, operator and battery data all under one program.
Installed on the battery, the Battery Health Monitor connects battery, forklift and operator by monitoring real-time data on battery activity. It captures battery performance during operation for each battery individually, which enables operators and managers to make timely and more proactive decisions as opposed to reactive decisions when the battery begins to fail. It positions forklift owners to manage batteries as assets, while driving operator accountability and improved battery troubleshooting that will enable better battery management practices.
“Our customers are now equipped with information to track amp hour throughput and run time, which helps them gain a better understanding of battery capabilities,” said Scott Barrett, motive power product manager, Crown Equipment. “They can more accurately identify neglected batteries, as well as determine which charging method – fast or opportunity – works best for each battery and which batteries work better in certain trucks and applications. Targeting certain batteries for particular applications promises to further enhance the efficiencies of battery rotation and lengthen battery runtime. Simply, this technology provides a holistic view of the battery that has been elusive for too long in our industry.”
Crown’s Battery Health Monitor provides an entirely different view of battery performance and health. For instance, managers can now know when the temperature of the battery exceeds a predetermined threshold and compare it with additional data, like water levels or last equalization, while it is operating. This type of information helps managers create a performance profile for each battery that can track operation throughout a given time period or for a particular application to ensure optimal performance.
The Battery Health Monitor works with any forklift as long as it is equipped with Crown’s InfoLink as part of the fleet management system’s Advantage Plan. The device uses Bluetooth to pair automatically with the forklift’s InfoLink module, which delivers the relevant battery and maintenance data collected by the monitor to a cloud-based management portal where it can be accessed through intuitive InfoLink dashboards. Instantaneous alerts on predetermined thresholds can be delivered to managers through email or text messages, allowing them to take action anytime or anywhere.