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Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Telecom providers can monitor diesel consumption – Chukwueke

Managing director, Communication Towers (CT), Mr. Philip Chukwueke, has said that telecommunications services providers in the country can technologically monitor diesel consumption to avert theft and unscrupulous acts by service delivery personnel.

Chukwueke made this known while speaking with newsmen at the just concluded Nigeria Com 2010, which held in Lagos, last weekend.

He said that this technology being offered by his firm, CT, is very useful in the telecoms service delivery because the likes of Global System for Mobile (GSM) communications operators and other telecom service providers could actually monitor diesel consumption of their base stations across the country.

“We also have a facility running in Yankari Games Reserves as we speak. It gives you instant information as to the much diesel has been used today in Yankari,” he said, stressing that it is based on text messaging that we put GSM, Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card in the unit and that SIM card continuously reports the depth of assets in the tank.

According to him, the software application from CT calculates the volume based on that depth, stressing that if anyone has a generator running and instead of a smooth consumption such a person suddenly witnessed a cleft, which means that somebody must have tampered with it.

“So, we can calculate these things to immediately know how much was removed; with that we can send you an email alerting you to investigate. We can give you how many hours a day, week or month that you generator runs,” he said.

Chukwueke also said that for proprietors of petrol station, CT offering could tell customers how much petrol is in the underground storage tank anywhere in the country.

“We can let you know when your people are selling fuel and when they are not selling. And if you have fuel and they are not selling you must seek to know why. May be they want to sell in jerry cans at night,” he said.

He pointed out that as the nation warms up for the downstream deregulation of the petroleum industry this technology will become very crucial.

“If you have a petrol station your profit will depend on turn over, so, if your guys are not selling or hoarding because they want to sell at night and falsify the records, you will know wherever you are,” he said.

Responses by telecom companies, he said, have been encouraging, but noted that most firms take their time from testing of a given product to commercialisation, stressing that CT is at different stages of testing with some of these telcos.

“I do expect that may be in the next one month we would begin technical trial. One other thing you need to know is that the industry has out-sourced a lot of diesel supply to third parties. So the third parties are the ones that are now bearing the risk of theft.

“As we speak, we are in discussion with one of the biggest companies in Nigeria, they will be managing service for one of the biggest GSM companies and most likely they are going to use our tool,” Chukwueke said.

He explained that CT uses different types of sensors, some of the sensors use batteries that will last for two or three years, others do not.

“For those that will not, if it is a location that must have power 24/7 that means that they would have electric generator and in that case we can use the generator. But in some cases for a very small additional cost we can also package the solution with solar. That is the most preferred solution; it eliminates power surge and whole lot of things. We try to tell our clients that additional cost of solar option save us a lot of headache,” he submitted.

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