Self-communicating mobility scooters

Mobility

  • IoT
  • Predictive maintenance
  • Hardware

How can we collect data from mobility scooters to predict failure and secure client’s mobility? In a research and prototyping project for one of the largest automotive distributors, Bit engineered a hardware/software prototype able to communicate the critical data from mobility scooters to our clients mobility aid service center.

Challenge

Create an efficient and reliable scooter park

Challenge

For people reliant on mobility scooters, every technical defect has an immediate effect on their daily life. Our client aspired to increase the efficiency of their mobility scooter park, bringing their service to the next level. By using real time data to predicting failure, gain insights in defects and proactively inform users on maintenance.

Outcome

5

circuit boards built

19.500 scooters

Improved maintenance

40 %

Reduction first-time-right appointments

Hypothesis

Bit_prototyping

Read S-drive to inform on irregularities

In case of a defect, currently a service engineer needs to see the mobility scooter, connect a cable and interface to the scooters S-drive, and read the stored data about past irregularities. In order to create connected mobility scooters, we had to find a way to get data out of the scooter, transform it and send it to the service center by itself. We assumed reading and deciphering the signals on the S-Drive's diagnostics port would enable us to translate these signals into comprehensible codes that could be read at the service center.

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Research and prototyping

Bit_prototyping

From signals to status codes

A major part of the research was spent on finding out how the fluctuation in current corresponds with the mobility scooters speed, defects of the motor, motor brushes, and whether the storage battery had been disconnected. Next to this it was needed to understand the usage behavior and the circumstances under which the scooter is kept. For this reason we added extra hardware and sensors, informing on battery conditions, humidity and temperature.The prototype proved the current generation of mobility scooters can be upgraded to a connected vehicle and give our client the opportunity to take a big leap in their scooter maintenance.

Bit_prototyping

Outcome

Bit provided the hardware and data needed to predict maintenance and pro-actively service clients, while lowering the mechanic visits needed to keep mobility scooters up and running.

Hardware prototype

Tested prototype for connected mobility scooters.

Improved ownership

Moving data ownership from an external party to our client.

Cost reduction

Lower hardware costs and fewer visits from mechanics