Several companies promise a dream of never having to pay visit to a gas station again have. In fact, on demand fuel delivery services have popped up in a few of cities in California. On demand fuel delivery service is already a hit among Londoners.
How it works?
They are app-based services and work like Uber for fuel. That is, a person who needs to refuel his vehicle without having to visit a fuel station, downloads and registers on the app. Then he requests gas delivery by taping a button on the location-aware app he just downloaded.
The app tags the location where his car is. The person can also manually select a location if he and the car needs refueling are at a different location. The fuel truck driver with his own app can navigate to the tagged location with the help of inbuild map on his app.
He will refuel the car while taking care of all safety regulation and compliances. The amount gets deducted from the payment method he opted for at time of request.
Building the fleet
A major part of creating an on-demand fuel delivery solution is building an infrastructure—the grassroot level of work, which again requires building a fleet of fuel trucks. The trucks must adhere to regulatory and safety compliances in the jurisdiction you’re operating the business in.
In California alone, the fuel carriers in your fleet needs approval by both California Weights and Measures agencies, the Department of Transportation, the highway patrol, and multiple fire marshals and departments after thorough review and inspection.
To make your infrastructure futureproof, the infrastructure must span all sorts of fuels and not just Gasoline and Diesel. Tesla has brought electric cars quite in mainstream. The same goes for vehicles that run of compressed or liquified natural gas.
Once the fleet is ready to operate, you must start building an IT infrastructure around your physical infrastructure.
Creating the infrastructure
Building an IT infrastructure to realize an on-demand gas delivery solution work is more complicated than building one to realize a fleet of taxis. While for taxis, mere on-board GPS, even on-device GPS is enough to cover the entire operations, from rider to driver, a fuel carrier needs to report a lot of additional information to the handler or the driver (depending upon the information) and must act upon on its own too in addition to performing its Uber like function of on-demand delivery app.
GPS alone can’t report the multifaced information and thus carriers must be equipped with additional set of hardware or software workarounds to report the additional set of information to the handler.
IoT devices are all around from public domain to our home. They can connect to the internet directly, draw minimum amount of power, can report vital statistics in real-time, can interface with mobile apps/ devices, and are low cost.
‘Beacon’ is a Bluetooth LE IoT device that can run for years on a single button cell.
Smart IoT devices equipped with essential sensors and actuators and connected to the internet can do essential reporting of fuel truck in real-time. A smart sensor in the truck can detect an anomaly in the reported data and based on the severity of the detection can report it to the fleet handler, driver, or make the truck take a decision on its own.
Reporting and analytics
Fuel trucks must maintain a lot of parameters under safe limits to keep the fuel delivery system up and going. That goes from the temperature & pressure inside the fuel chamber to the quality of the delivered fuel and before and after volume.
The smart devices inside the truck and the fuel chamber continuously send those vital numbers to a cloud handler that stores them in log form and feeds it to an analytics software for processing. The processed data can be used by planners and strategists to revamp the present game-plan accordingly.
Developing the software solution
No. of smart sensors to be interfaced in the fuel trucks depends upon clients’ requirements and safety and regulatory compliances in your jurisdiction. Once you have finalized the list of smart sensors to be integrated in your solution, it’s time to start build the software part, including the mobility solutions in the form of apps.
An essential part of every software is backend. Backend is invisible part of any software installation that contains lines and lines of code and bunch of compatibility layers to make it interfaceable with other applications and devices. Once the backend is developed, compatible application and devices work in unison as a single solution.
An on-demand fuel delivery system needs at least two apps to work with their own set of backend and frontend: one for the fuel truck driver and one for the users.
On-demand fuel delivery solution with Peerbits
Peerbits has developed tens of on-demand solution for many industries, including oil and gas industry. Our developers are well-versed with developing on demand apps and are responsible for the uberfication of many service industry.