Case Study

SilverHook: It’s plane sailing with Watson IoT

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For those wanting to dive in to IoT, our partnership with Cisco and SilverHook is the perfect example of why you should take the plunge, and get your feet wet…

SilverHook powerboats

These stunning vehicles reach speeds surpassing 100 MPH in the open ocean. SilverHook Powerboats pride themselves on their advanced monohull designs. These specialized boats are aerodynamic and can shoot across the water at speed. By optimizing the shape for the least amount of air resistance, limiting the weight of the boat, and adding stabilizing fins, SilverHook pioneers one of the fastest boats in its class.
Real-time data and IoT

But, as we know, speed isn’t everything, especially in extreme conditions. And that’s where IBM and Cisco come in – giving boat racers access to real-time data to ensure safety, and speed.

IBM Watson IoT analytics brings valuable information to SilverHook drivers and coaches in real time. The data captured can immediately inform coaches (either back on shore, or in a helicopter riding alongside the boat) of weather changes, or important wind patterns that could affect the boats stability.

Sensors within the boats engines tell drivers of internal shifts within the boat. If a driver accelerates too quickly, the sensors will send information to the IBM Watson IoT Platform, which will inform drivers and coaches of the potential dangers. Drivers will know exactly when to throttle back in order to prevent system failure within the boats engines. Without this information, engines could malfunction at sea.

Before IBM Watson and Cisco teamed up drivers and coaches would wait until after a race to analyze data. Competing on the ocean means that conditions are constantly in flux; readings from one race could be totally irrelevant in the next.

IBM Watson IoT Platform and Cisco edge thrive on this variability, by providing racing teams of information in real-time, drivers can react at the right time.

A better audience experience with IoT

By connecting their boats to the IBM Cloud, SilverHook Powerboats is providing a more immersive experience for offshore racing fans. Instead of watching from a distance racing fans can now view the racer’s dashboard in real-time, joining in with the driving experience and watching the dials turn towards top speeds. The information on the dashboard includes GPS positioning, engine performance data, oil pressure, fuel pressure, horsepower, acceleration metrics. In addition to the dashboard, real-time animations also show fans who is in the lead.

In six-foot seas, drivers can find it difficult to read the gauges in front of them. With acceleration forces reaching 6.9 Gs (double of what an astronaut experiences at lift off) safety is of the utmost concern. With real-time analytics coaches can support drivers making important decisions and assist with technical problems. With races taking place sometimes miles off shore, real-time analytics could be the real difference between winning a race and a disaster.

Read more about our partnership with Cisco. Learn more about SilverHook. Or sign up for a free trial of our Watson IoT platform.

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