|188.8.131.52.3 ISO 10368 standard|
|Experience has proved that it only makes sense to use a monitoring system when there is a standard for data exchange, as genuine saving effects can only be achieved if all refrigerated containers can be monitored by PCT insofar as this is possible. For this reason, an ISO sub-committee was set up between 1987 and 1990 to define a standard. This was finally published as ISO 10368. Since the various companies participating in the committee had different interests, no consensus was reached regarding hardware (i.e. the transmission frequency), and consequently there are still two systems available on the market. Only the frequency ranges for each system were defined, to ensure that they could both be operated simultaneously.
Apart from this, the standard primarily regulates the data transmission protocol (i.e. software) and defines the minimum range of functions for remote communication devices (RCDs).
These functions comprise:
Overall, the ISO Standard has only documented the two existing systems and prescribed some very basic queries. Even if all transmission protocols were put in the public domain, this would mean today that a separate software driver would have to be available for every modem type. Since the controllers of the refrigeration units and the data loggers which are used also have different ranges of functions and data formats, a large number of drivers is needed to support all potential configurations. Consequently, the ISO Standard has been of little help and only resulted in apparent standardization.
Another issue which was not dealt with by ISO is data protection. In accordance with ISO (and also in practice), all data on all containers equipped with modems is available on the power supply network. It is therefore possible theoretically that third parties with access to the power line network via a master modem can read out and even change information on the containers (e.g. the nominal values). This was never a problem while shipping companies were only using PCT on board their own ships and terminals. Once it began to be used on multi user terminals, however, the network operators (terminal operators) have had to ensure that only authorized persons have access to information on containers which pertains to them.
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