IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets

IBM Think is collaborating with Garmin Health, Guardhat, Mitsufuji and SmartCone to help monitor worker safety in hazardous environments, including mining, using IoT technology integrated into wearables
IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets IBM Watson IoT boosts tech providers' wearable gadgets

IBM announced collaborations with Garmin, Guardhat, Mitsufuji and SmartCone to help organisations monitor their workers’ safety with Watson IoT

Staff reporter

IBM's Maximo Worker Insights solution can monitor biometric and environmental data to help identify whether employees are experiencing dangers or risk. Data is gathered in near real time from wearables, smart devices and environmental sensors to help companies respond to problems or react to changing environmental conditions.

Employees working in rapidly changing environments face shifting conditions, whether on the factory floor, on the forklift, atop a cell tower or drilling into the earth. Utilising IoT to understand what workers are doing in the context of the dynamic environment around them - including heat, height, weather and gas levels - allows miners, among others, to implement near real-time and prescriptive safety practices to help protect the wellbeing of worker, IBM said.

Non-fatal workplace injuries account for close to US$60 billion in workers' compensation costs in the US. Although safety controls and personal protective equipment are mandatory in most hazardous jobs, IBM said this solution is designed to help companies to identify and respond to problems or react to changing environmental conditions. In fact, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 3 million non-fatal occupational injuries were recorded in 2017.

Wearable technology company Garmin is teaming up with IBM to offer organisations who deploy the IBM Maximo Worker Insights platform to receive alerts based on near real-time sensor data from workers wearing Garmin activity trackers. By embedding the Garmin Health Companion SDK in the IBM Maximo Worker Insights platform, supervisors and safety officers can receive notifications for high heart rate and man-down scenarios, as well as review historical analytics based on the biometric signals from Garmin wearables.

Guardhat's KYRA IoT platform can complement the IBM Worker Insights solution to provide situational awareness to workers and company operations through the use of Smart PPE wearables.

Mitsufuji, in turn, has launched a new wearable ‘shirt' to track IoT sensor data from workers' biometrics to help ensure safety and productivity in extreme environments. The hamon shirt, made from silver conductive fibres, collects a wearer's biometric data, including heart rate, body temperature and location, as well as environmental data such as humidity, temperature, noise and toxic gas levels, together with the use of IBM Maximo Worker Insights.

SmartCone, a provider of smart, IoT-based safety and monitoring solutions for securing vulnerable and hazardous zones, will be integrating Maximo Worker Insights into its highly portable system to monitor worker safety in the utilities industry, community traffic, construction, mining and industrial environments with moving or dangerous no-go zones.