JLG's Loux shares future vision

News Story
- 11 Aug 2016 ( #782 ) - Singapore, Singapore
2 min read
JLG's Alan Loux
JLG's Alan Loux
Addressing International Powered Access Federation (IPAF) Asia members during the recent IPAF Asia Conference & Showcase in Singapore, Alan Loux, vice president - global marketing of JLG Industries, tied the future of the access industry to identifying and leveraging the right technologies.

"The long-term success of our industry relies on our ability to continuously improve upon the safe operation of our machines. Without question, technology is a great enabler of advanced safety solutions," Loux said in a keynote address.

In his opening remarks, Loux referenced technologies already in place to improve safety and reduce accidents, such as pothole protection systems, analogue envelope control, automatic outrigger levelling, fall arrest, enhanced protection against involuntary operation and load-sensing systems.

He also examined newer technologies the industry is embracing to reduce accidents, injuries and fatalities.

Loux encouraged the industry to push for the adoption and integration of several "near-term technologies", including collision avoidance and detection, self-levelling and virtual reality.

"There are all sorts of possibilities for using emerging technologies in equipment and training programs," he said. "By placing our trainees in a virtual reality environment, we would give them a greater feel (for) and a more natural experience (of) the work conditions."

Loux went on to describe a number of "close-in technologies" that have the potential to change the face of the access industry. For example, augmented reality and head-mounted displays could "give the operator access to a wealth of information regarding equipment operation, safety, or hazardous conditions, as well as a quick, easy-to-reference guide for typical job functions".

Loux's list of close-in technologies also included wearables, the Internet of Things, and drones.

"What if we placed sensors everywhere - on vests, gloves, boots, and equipment - including lift arms, attachments, and tyres? We could also put sensors on welding equipment, the pallet on a telehandler, and the materials resting on the pallet. With all those sensors in place and providing data, we would create a complete view of the job envelope. They would allow us to gather a wealth of information that could be tracked and shared to enhance safety and productivity," Loux added.

He then turned his attention to "future-looking technologies", including autonomous vehicle operation, robotics and big data, which would enable revolutionary technology, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning.

Loux concluded his remarks by challenging his audience to "talk with your fellow IPAF members, co-workers, vendors, customers, and others about how technology is revolutionising our industry".

"Change the way you think about safety. And then use technology to make our industry even better."
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