Transmon Engineering has developed the ‘next generation’ of speed limiting and safety devices for forklift trucks to help transport and storage operations heighten safety and reduce costs.
“Led by customer feedback and requests from the industry, we have made significant updates to our iTEch Control system,” explains Bob Warner, Sales Manager for Transmon. “On top of safety, a key focus for our customers is to enhance efficiency and reduce operational costs.”
The iTEch Control system is designed to restrict a vehicle’s top travel speed, to enhance safety. It can be fitted to any type of forklift truck and the latest version helps businesses to reduce costs through decreased fuel consumption and servicing, thanks to an idle shutdown feature. The system also prevents wheel spin when changing direction, and protects the transmission by preventing hot-shifting while moving, further contributing to reduced costs.
“Alterations to the design of the 2015 model have helped to considerably reduce manufacturing costs as well, which we pass on to our customers,” adds Bob Warner. “In addition, close collaboration with different vehicle manufacturers during creation of the new iTEch Control unit has resulted in the fitting time being greatly reduced as well as removing the need to modify the vehicles, which was previously necessary in some cases.”
Proportional restriction when travelling up inclines is made possible by improvements to programming on both systems. If the system detects a decrease in speed, for example, the throttle restriction is gradually relaxed to increase engine revs, allowing the vehicle to maintain its speed while travelling up the slope. New software also makes it easy and quick to programme and update the unit from any Windows-based laptop via a USB cable.
Although the iTEch Control system is primarily designed for vehicles with ‘drive-by-wire’ electronic throttle control, a new Motor Controller add-on enables both units to be adapted to suit traditional cable-operated throttles as well. This means the same unit can be fitted to all types of vehicles, removing the need for vehicle engineers and suppliers to support several different units. It also means that the unit can be removed and re-fitted to different models.
“Trucks are often removed from a site for repair, or to be replaced, which may have previously meant losing the speed limiter unit,” explains Bob Warner. “These new units can be swapped from one vehicle to another, quickly and with minimal tools, helping to reduce downtime and increase efficiency, as well as keeping the same units working consistently.”
Speed limit in zones
Transmon’s iTEch Zone system, when used in conjunction with the iTEch Control, automatically limits the truck’s travel speed as it enters a designated ‘zone’, enabling the truck to switch between two programmable speed limits.
“Unlike other similar systems, the Transmon iTEch Zone relies upon coded short-range radio, which is not affected by sunlight, bad weather, dirt, or operator tampering, and can be set to default to slow speed,” explains Bob Warner.
Speed limit on proximity
For operations that require pedestrians and trucks to work closely together, Transmon’s iTEch Proximity Alert, offered in partnership with OnGrade, helps to limit the vehicle’s travel speed when pedestrians, other vehicles, or high-value assets are detected within a set range of the vehicle via an Active RFID fob. Even when the driver has acknowledged the detection to silence the alarm, additional detections re-trigger the alarm, alerting the driver to the increased hazard. Pedestrians can also be alerted when they are detected by a vehicle, with a vibrating transponder, attached to clothing or PPE (Personal Protective Equipment).
“After more than 20 years of pioneering electronic control and management devices for industrial vehicles, Transmon is as committed as ever to improving our existing products, and creating new ones, to suit our customers’ current and potential future requirements,” adds Steve Coley, Managing Director of Transmon.