Indiana county installs new in-vehicle control panel

Dec. 10, 2013

The Allen County (IN) Highway Dept. is installing the SmartTek 8-button switch panel and mini I/O control module from Riverside Mfg., LLC. The technology is replacing older rocker switches in the vehicles.

The combined SmartTek product is a solid-state controller area network (CAN) based module for electrical systems which distribute electrical energy to power external headlamps, turn fans on and off, control internal dome lights and more. By having an easy-to-use interface with a high number of power switch inputs, the product allows a user to more efficiently operate vehicle electrical systems, Riverside said.

The company said Allen County installed the modules in a number of dump trucks to maintain greater control over electrical system functions, such as activating the salt spreader, power take off (PTO) and controlling plow strobe lights. The module offers multiple user-friendly methods for programming without the need to comprehend high levels of electrical system coding.  

“Creating products that simplify operations while on the road is one of our company’s top goals,” said Fred Merritt, CEO of Riverside. “With this solid-state module, users may install it themselves without having to engage additional technical assistance for backend code. Furthermore, customers have the ability to configure more switches and control more items that require powering within their vehicle, which they couldn’t do before with most current control panels.”

Designed with the latest solid-state components for maximum configurability and control, the SmartTek system features customizable inserts and programmable multi-color backlit buttons in a small enclosure. Additionally, the technology is housed in weather-tight extruded aluminum protecting against harsh weather conditions, and the system offers eight 10 amp configurable outputs and four digital-input channels.

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