Continental Uses IoT to Make Truck Tires Intelligent

Continental's new ContiConnect digital tire monitoring platform uses Vodafone’s IoT SIM technology to collect tire pressure data for commercial vehicle fleets and display it in a mobile-friendly web portal.

Conti Connect System
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Continental, the leading technology company, automotive supplier, and premium tire manufacturer, is helping to make the world’s roads safer using the Internet of Things (IoT). Continental’s new digital tire monitoring platform, ContiConnect, uses Vodafone’s IoT SIM technology to collect tire pressure data for commercial vehicle fleets, every time the trucks return to the fleet terminal, and display it in a mobile-friendly web portal that can be accessed from anywhere in the world.

Identifying tires with low air pressure or high temperature is vital to ensuring the safety of all road users, as these conditions can cause dangerous tire blowouts. The fleet’s tires are monitored every time its trucks or buses return to the terminal, helping prevent tire blowouts on the road. The ability for a fleet manager or maintenance manager to view the data remotely is a significant benefit of IoT, along with the web portal’s ability to send text message and email alerts if a tire issue is identified. With this technology, manual pressure checks in the fleet yard are eliminated, and tire data is available to everyone in the fleet, no matter where they find themselves.

Paul Williams, Continental’s Executive Vice President of Commercial Vehicle Tires in the Americas, says, “Fleets no longer have to rely on performing tire pressure checks on tens, hundreds, or even thousands of tires on their vehicles. With ContiConnect, they will know immediately upon returning to the fleet terminal whether any tires have low pressure. Leveraging the Internet of Things saves fleets time and money by protecting their tires, and improves safety for everyone who drives on the roadway.”

Vodafone’s IoT Director Stefano Gestaut says, “This is a great example of how IoT can make real world differences in so many unexpected places. This ensures that truck drivers experience fewer tire-related breakdowns and accidents – making the roads a safer place to be for every vehicle user.”

The Importance of Tire Inflation

Identifying tire pressure or temperature deviations is vital to ensuring the safety and longevity of a fleet’s tires. When a tire is under-inflated, the components in the sidewall flex beyond their designed limits, weaken, and could eventually fail. Continental’s tire sensors can also identify creeping air loss, one of the major causes of tire failure, before it would typically be noticed in a pre- or post-trip inspection, helping to reduce tire-related breakdowns on the road.

Even once a tire is re-inflated to the proper specifications, it is possible that internal damage has occurred. “Noticing under-inflation and re-inflating the tire as soon as possible is vital,” says Helmut Keller, Continental’s Head of Product and Brand Management for Commercial Vehicle Tires in the Americas. “If a tire consistently runs with severely low air pressure, simply adding air later cannot reverse internal damage. It would be like saying that putting the chicken salad back in the refrigerator after it sat outside at a picnic all day would make it safe to eat again. Unfortunately, that’s not just accurate. Protecting a fleet’s tire assets and preventing roadside tire incidents starts with noticing and resolving low air pressure sooner, which is what ContiConnect is designed to facilitate.”

ContiConnect Digital Tire Monitoring Platform

With ContiConnect, fleets are able to replace manual and routine tire care with automatic and targeted care, fixing issues where they are known to exist and saving inspection and maintenance time. Continental’s wireless sensors, mounted inside the truck tires, collect accurate tire pressure and temperature data. The data is transmitted as soon as the sensors come within range of the receiver unit, which is known as a yard reader station since it is typically mounted in the fleet yard. The yard reader station then transmits the data in real-time to the Continental backend where a software program analyzes it and displays it in the ContiConnect web portal. If any of the values are critical, ContiConnect sends an alert via text or email so that the fleet manager can take action immediately.

One of the largest automotive suppliers and tire manufacturers in the world, Continental develops pioneering technologies to make fleets safer, more efficient, and more connected. With innovative tire technology and digital fleet solutions, Continental optimizes tire lifecycle management to help our customers achieve their Lowest Overall Driving Cost.