Mecc App

MeccApp, the one-click alternator-control panel

App development
Internet of Things

The combination of a widely used hardware system and a new technology specifically designed for Mecc Alte, the leading alternator supplier.

Innovation is supposed to solve the real needs that arise from daily work, and this is what Mecc Alte – the leading alternator producer based in Vicenza (Italy) – was looking for. Particularly, we were asked for a solution that would enable maintenance operators to monitor and modify the parameters of the alternators safely, keeping their procedure or hardware used nearly unchanged.

Mecc Alte was created in 1947 as an electric motor workshop. Over the years it has grown to produce over 1,400 alternators a day across the globe. It has become the world’s leading producer and the third largest in terms of turnover.
The control boards – the heart of every machine – communicate through the ModBus protocol. Mecc Alte control boards represent a competitive advantage for the company. Mecc Alte’s technology is reliable, operating, and it has been in use for years. The real challenge for our engineers was to have an “outdated” system communicate with an innovative app.
Improving an existing and operating technology through incremental innovation and revolutionizing the logic of an entire industry

Improving an existing and operating technology through incremental innovation and revolutionizing the logic of an entire industry

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Our engineers have been working for seven months on a system that would keep the control boards already in use (avoiding huge replacement costs both for Mecc Alte and their customers) and make them communicate with a native app for iOS and Android – MeccApp. Just two weeks after the first meeting with the managers of the Italian company, the team found a way to communicate with the protocols used by the alternators’ control boards.

The new system has led to a board that connects the heart of the alternator and the technician’s device. This board is connected to the board inside the alternator via a USB cable, so it is possible to make changes remotely, simply through wireless connection generated by the module itself.

The search for the right board required the work of a pool of experts specializing in different fields. Hardware and software experts collaborated to find the best solution to meet the set goals, and the other Mecc Alte components the board would be integrated with.

When an alternator works at full capacity, touching its components can be dangerous, not to mention that it may also be difficult to reach. The Uqido system communicates with the internal board via cable through the ModBus protocol and transmits data via wifi to the technicians’ devices. They are thus able to change or check parameters with a tap.

Reducing costs and time for monitoring alternators is a benefit for Mecc Alte’s customers

MeccApp shows in real time everything that happens inside an alternator. Once the machine code is entered a screen pops up, showing a graph summarizing the three main parameters: output voltage, frequency of the board, and degree of excitation.

An intuitive menu on the left was created (after much user testing) by our design department to make it possible to interact with the board connected to the alternator, by changing other parameters. At the top right of the screen, there is a bell icon that signals any alerts.

It is also possible to have a backup copy of the status of the board and share this file with the service center. Finally, the archive lets the user go over all the connections and changes that have been made.

For Mecc Alte it is essential to rely on solid technology for large-scale production. This is what enables MeccApp to handle any situation and provide an answer to any query from the users.

The project was successfully launched at the Middle East Electricity Exhibition in Dubai – the largest energy exhibition in the world in which Mecc Alte has participated for eleven years – which was held from 5 to 7 March 2019. It was an opportunity that let the world’s greatest industrialists discover Uqido’s technology. MeccApp can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play Store.

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