Systematic Optimization of Industrial Lifting Machines

With “Diligent Squirrel“, 600,000 data points are recorded in a decentralized and cloud-based way and processed automatically

PALFINGER sells complex and versatile industrial lifting solutions that are used worldwide in various fields of operation. This is why the company has to look into the different possible applications of their products in advance and get to know these areas as well as possible. Their high and comprehensive expertise is a fundamental requirement for continuous innovation and product improvement. In order to gain further knowledge and new insight, the project “Diligent Squirrel“ was started in 2002.

The challenge

“Diligent Squirrel“ is a joint research and development project generating valuable operating data of the PALFINGER products in various applications. A multitude of different measurement parameters is recorded on customer devices in use over a long period of time.

The collected data have to be logged in a highly precise, secure, and autonomous way. Cloud technology ensures the global availability and automatic processing of the measurement results. The data are sent to a cloud storage via a mobile connection. Moreover, the measurement data acquisition needs to be displayed online on mobile terminals.



  • Rugged data logger system with WiFi & ETH interface
  • Automatic remote data transmission to the data base
  • Wireless online display of the measurement data
  • High sample rate, reliability, and security during data recording
  • Measurement of temperature, voltage, pressure, and ECU data via CAN bus
  • Compact loggers & modules

The solution

The IPETRONIK integral system, including highly precise measurement modules and sensors as well as the IoT-capable data loggers FLEETlog2 and µCROS SL with MQTT interface, is ideal for the decentralized and cloud-based collection and automatic processing of huge amounts of data.

Highly efficient integral system with IoT technology

Both data loggers are compact, rugged, and a perfect fit for the systematic monitoring of CAN-based automotive networks, measurement modules, and ECUs. The µCROS SL provides four high speed CAN inputs and supports 4G for even faster data transmission. A multitude of supported protocols (e.g. XCP, CCP, J1939) and diagnostic services (e.g. UDS, ODX) record all the important parameters and transfer them to an FTP server for evaluation. The system also allows for the real-time data transmission to a mobile display solution (tablet or cell phone). The corresponding app visualizes the data with many display instruments and supports various trigger events.

720 million data points in one year

For their “Diligent Squirrel“ project, PALFINGER mounted the above-mentioned data loggers in combination with M-SENS modules and additional sensors on different cranes. Within the last year, these cranes have produced ca. 720 million data points. The amount of collected data is growing by ca. 600,000 data points per day. Up to 120 different data channels are recorded per crane. Via a mobile connection, they are sent to a cloud storage for further processing. After conversion and cleansing, the data are transferred to a data lake that can be accessed via the cloud.

The advantages

With this project, a multitude of highly precise measurement parameters can be collected under real-life operating conditions over a long period of time. The cloud technology allows for an automatic processing that can validate and/or improve various computational models and hypotheses. The integral system offers:

  • 4G and MQTT interface for online display (via the IPEmotion app)
  • Wireless connection to a mobile terminal
  • Global availability of the measurement results
  • Secure and autonomous measurement data recording
  • Versatile visualization tools

"For our day-to-day work, we need a lot of data generated by our devices. With the real-life data from the project ‘Diligent Squirrel’, we are able to improve our algorithms and models thanks to a ‘digital twin’. The thus generated information helps to design future cranes in a more target-oriented and efficient way and to improve the product ‘crane’ as a whole.“

(PALFINGER Development Department)


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