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SAS Optimizes IIoT Software for Connected Transportation

By Ken Briodagh September 19, 2017

Asset-intensive industries need to ensure that those assets experience as little downtime as possible to maximize profits, while maintaining safety for workers and customers. According to a recent release, GE Transportation is working to ensure that all us going well for its railroad-industry customers by integrating SAS to decipher Internet of Things (IoT) data and uncover use patterns.

"GE Transportation’s locomotives are equipped with edge devices that manage hundreds of data elements per second to optimize locomotive operation,” said Garret Fitzgerald, GM, Transport Intelligence, GE Transportation. “We use SAS Event Stream Processing in our Predix-based EdgeLINC offering to enable our customers with analytical insights on their data in real time. Although we're in the integration phase of this project, the software has been easy to implement and use.”

GE Transportation has integrated SAS Event Stream Processing powered by the SAS Platform and its SAS Viya capabilities with the Predix Machine and Predix Edge Manager, deployed on equipment and in back offices. The combined solution is designed to help enterprises gain real-time insights and drive improved outcomes by harnessing the power of streaming edge analytics running on board connected locomotives. SAS Event Stream Processing can be scaled, embedded and deployed across an enterprise, from small, constrained devices that sit at the network's edge, to cloud data centers. Its performance and ease of adoption provide organizations the flexibility to adapt to evolving challenges.

“In the IoT era, data is the fuel and analytics is the engine that drives value and tangible outcomes,” said Randy Guard, EVP and CMO, SAS. “GE Transportation sought to develop an intelligent network to increase the value of its investment in connected IoT assets. They understand the need for analytics close to the edge, directly on the locomotives. With SAS Event Stream Processing, GE Transportation will benefit from a unified analytics environment and the ability for data scientists to code in the programming language they prefer to drive valuable customer outcomes faster.”

That’s not the only recent execution for SAS in the Connected Transportation world. The North Carolina Department of Transportation reportedly is deploying SAS analytics software with the goal of staying ahead of rapid growth, evolving infrastructure demands and disruptive developments like IoT and autonomous vehicles. NCDOT is extending its use of the SAS Platform to include SAS Viya, which adds capabilities for artificial intelligence, open access to all data types, open language processing, and cloud deployments, to power its pioneering Transportation Analytics Center.

The Transportation Analytics Center integrates data from multiple agencies to improve customer service and reduce costs across NCDOT. It builds on the previous success of a budget and revenue forecasting project.

“We saw the power and potential of analytics through our early projects with SAS,” said Frank Winn, acting Chief Information Officer, NCDOT. “The Transportation Analytics Center will transform operations by allowing us to leverage existing data in ways we never have before, and by leading us to manage and govern new data that will increase standardization and utilization.”

Analytics and dashboards will help the NC Turnpike Authority better understand toll road customers, and increase usage and revenue by identifying drivers most likely to travel toll roads and those most likely to pay by transponder versus bill-by-mail.

SAS and NCDOT analyzed data on transported goods, and truck and Amtrak movement, to improve time-to-transit and other performance indicators. This analysis will help NCDOT improve freight capacity to grow revenue, improve long-term planning, and analyze and expedite environmental studies.

“Citizens want their tax money used efficiently to create high-quality roads and bridges that get them safely to their destinations,” said Paula Henderson, VP, US Government Practice, SAS. “By integrating analytics throughout NCDOT operations, North Carolina is positioning itself to meet those demands, and as a leader in transportation and infrastructure innovation.”


Ken Briodagh is a writer and editor with more than a decade of experience under his belt. He is in love with technology and if he had his druthers would beta test everything from shoe phones to flying cars.

Edited by Ken Briodagh

Editorial Director

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