Wood Business

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FPInnovations data for Newfoundland

Mar. 6, 2014, Pointe-Claire, Qué.– FPInnovations and HiTech Communications have signed a distribution agreement that authorizes the Newfoundland-based company to serve as the sales agent for the FPDat and FPTrak product line in Newfoundland and Labrador as well as in Nova Scotia. In addition to distributing FPDat and FPTrak, HiTech Communications will also provide local technical support and installation services. This agreement will offer an advantage for end users in these two Atlantic Provinces as they will benefit from local points of contact.

FPDat is a unique, rugged, on-board computer developed, at the request of the forest industry, by FPInnovations through research projects supported financially by the Transformative Technologies Program (TTP) of National Resources Canada (NRCan). FPDat collects and analyzes data directly from forest equipment such as feller-bunchers, harvesters, skidders, and forwarders, as well as other mobile heavy machinery in the energy and construction sector. FPDat informs operators and managers in real- time on various parameters such as utilization, treated areas, GPS track logs, productivity and the causes of downtime. More than 300 FPDat units are already in use across Canada with additional specialized features continuously being developed, such as the Transport and the Grader modules. The FPTrak web- based service provides data hosting and a reporting interface for information generated by the FPDat.

"Competition in the forest products industry is driven, in part, by fibre costs. By creating opportunities to reduce fiber costs through optimized operations, FPDat holds the potential to increase the competitiveness of traditional industries," explained Peter Lister, Vice President, Forest Operations and Wood Products of FPInnovations.

"We are very proud to add FPDat to the collection of products and services we provide to our growing customer base", says Murray Caines, President of HiTech Communications.

Distribution agreements with service providers located in the other provinces are also being explored to extend FPDat's deployment in other regions of Canada.