Imagine the waste your business is producing is picked up two to three times faster, then sorted with 99% accuracy, and operations cost less than usual per year?
Waste management is an issue companies inevitably face. Smart waste management, on the other hand, is more of an opportunity than a challenge. By adopting industrial IoT solutions, facilities can better understand their waste creation patterns, enhance internal policies, and identify problematic points.
Here’s why you should give smart waste management a try.
Receiving full transparency on your waste situation
You can track how much waste you are creating and how fast you are doing it. There are ultrasoniс sensors and RFID tags for waste containers and bins that control how full a bin is, and where it is located. The same sensors can collect data on every parameter possible like types of containers, real-time weight, and even contents.
With the help of waste management software, the so-called ’internet of bins’ makes clear how much waste is produced by a company in a day, a week, or a month. After gathering the statistics, you have an idea about how well the company is coping with waste management. If somewhere on your territory the bins are overflowing or stay empty for weeks, you can assemble a map of your container placements and rearrange them for better waste distribution and decongestion.
Equipping your bins with sensors improves the safety of your operators and property: sensors can work as fire alarms in case of waste ignitions and control air emission levels.
Scaling your waste management workforce
Once you know the condition of your waste management process, optimizing pickup routes and schedules becomes informed instead of simply regular. You can change the number of operators and vehicles, tailor it to your workflow, and get comparable results, like 66% reduction of collection costs.
Depending on the time of the year or the production stage, there might be unexpected findings resulting in lower costs. For example, IoT can save you as much as 30 seconds per bin during a daily pickup ride, decreasing man-hours paid a month. The refuse truck itself can do part of the work, and ensure an operator can work alone comfortably and safely, without a second person having to navigate the truck or empty the bin.
Equipped with AI-driven software, the vehicle just follows a strolling person to the bin destination, scanning surroundings for obstacles and traffic. The truck always interacts with a driver through beacons for precise navigation, which saves time on hopping back and forth in the cabin and allows driving less than a mile to the next location.
Cutting costs on maintenance
Finding the right frequency for waste pickup is essential for optimizing cost and complying with industry regulations. Emptying a half-filled bin means that pickup came too early and will have to return sooner, spending twice as much fuel and other resources.
Having waste collection statistics on your hands, you can clearly see which routes and amounts of waste to handle are working best for you at a given moment. It allows you to adjust pickup frequency without sabotaging your budget and capacities.
A virtual waste management system monitors full bins and the traffic situation in the area while planning the route. Thanks to the same sensors that track the containers’ location and contents, you can diagnose and locate broken or malfunctioning equipment — for example, if there is no connection from one of the objects. Even if bin replacement or repairs are needed, the planning system can simply skip this location and recalculate the route before it causes problems and delays.
Refining sorting and recycling with robotics
With the help of AI, the future of recycling might be safer with minimum human intervention. Automated sorting lines reduce reliance on manual sorters. Enhanced with computer vision cameras for object detection, robots have higher picking speed and increased capacity, while keeping people away from the potentially harmful direct contact with waste.
The robots recognize objects when passing by on the sorting line and manipulate them according to their types. The collected visual data is a fertile ground for big data analytics that shows opportunities for more effective and multilevel recycling. For example, you can analyze the pool of unidentified items deeper and add one more waste stream.
Information from sensors and smart sorting gives you a better understanding of waste input and material losses. When there are recycling targets to keep up with, AI makes it easier to tweak capacities to the required output.
Reducing carbon footprint
Reducing harm to the environment is a natural result of waste management digital transformation. If you constantly optimize your waste pickup and recycle the most out of it, you are not only saving money but also generate less carbon emission.
Resource efficiency and energy saving is the key parameter of effective waste management. IoT and smart monitoring systems are designed to be low-carbon. An infrastructure of sensors makes sure repetitive tasks like waste collection or bin replacements are pre-planned and spends less fuel and energy on transporting means and workers. Deploying smart bins and IoT-enabled applications can potentially reduce carbon emission worldwide by 4% by 2030.
Lowering carbon footprint is an image-boosting step for your company. It can bring a positive impact on the public health of the neighborhood you are living and working in, as well as the environment as a whole.
Why act now?
The more business owners and managers explore IoT-driven waste management, the more customers and employees reap its benefits. With these smart practices put into place, it shouldn’t be much longer before they become a fully manageable infrastructure with cheaper maintenance, extensive recycling, and lower carbon emissions.