31.01.2024 | Press Release
If the tower crane’s control electronics suddenly fail during use, the brakes malfunction, or if problems arise during reeving, then you need quick and easy help. Wolffkran’s response to this is WOLFF Assist, the digital remote maintenance system – hands-free and voice-controlled using smart glasses. Debuting at bauma in 2022, the remote assistance tool is now widely used by WOLFF service technicians, and leasing and purchasing customers can also benefit from it.
“Of course, you can also quickly and easily solve some of these problems with a video call,” says Achim Spillmann, Director of After-Sales Service at Wolffkran GmbH. “But WOLFF Assist is more than just a conventional communications tool with video calling. It is a smart service tool that has been specifically tailored for the demands of a construction site and crane.”
The smart glasses make up the centerpiece of WOLFF Assist. Equipped with a camera, microphone, and monitor, these smart glasses are worn on the head or attached to the helmet, allowing the person on the crane to have their hands free at all times, which is a major benefit in terms of safety and flexibility. The glasses transmit the field of vision of the technician on the construction site to WOLFF service experts in real time. In other words, it shows exactly what the technician on the crane is seeing and can specifically assist them with troubleshooting – either verbally, via chat, or even via screen sharing with a highlighting function.
Speak less, achieve more
Exceptionally practical for the person on the crane: WOLFF Assist offers voice control in a variety of languages. Once you have established an internet connection via a smartphone and registered the smart glasses on the network, it only takes a few voice commands to patch in an available service expert to the situation on the crane live and 24/7. “The application is able to simultaneously translate spoken and written words into multiple languages. That is particularly noteworthy for international applications and also takes into account the wide range of nationalities at the construction sites,” explains Achim Spillmann. “Needless to say, service technicians can also use the remote tool to connect to and help each other to reach a solution more quickly.”
If desired, the resulting images and videos of the conversation can be saved and retrieved again. No special software is required since WOLFF Assist is a web application.
A milestone in efficiency and sustainability
The advantages of WOLFF Assist are clear: Average repair times have been reduced by up to 70% and service costs have been decreased by up to 50% per year. In addition, there is the savings in CO2 emissions due to decreased travel and greater crane availability due to faster servicing. Furthermore, WOLFF Assist can also be used as a training tool for crane personnel or technicians.
WOLFF Assist is not only widely used internally at Wolffkran. All Wolffkran customers and users, from customer technicians to crane operators, have the opportunity to purchase the smart glasses and use WOLFF Assist with an annual license. One pair of smart glasses can be used by several registered persons. In addition, WOLFF Assist can also be used on a tablet, smartphone, or laptop without smart glasses. Numerous additional features are being planned to further enhance the application. For instance, the Wolffkran team is currently working on a technical dictionary specifically for cranes, which will enhance the translation software.