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Case Study

  • Client: Global Marine Manufacturer
  • Project: Remote Troubleshooting Using Raspberry Pi
  • Country/Region:

A global marine manufacturer engaged Intertech to produce video support capabilities to remote locations using Raspberry Pi. Our expert Intertech consultants worked From Intertech’s Eagan, MN offices to create an integration that allows for real-time technical support. As a result, the highly-trained experts can now advise technicians in remote locations, providing troubleshooting and support over the internet through a custom application.

Technologies Used

  • .NET
  • C#
  • Python
  • Visual Studio
  • Raspberry Pi

Challenge

Providing support to remote locations is a challenge, particularly when experts working at corporate headquarters are not able to see what the technicians are seeing as they work on engines across the world. The client wanted to be able to use webcam, smartphone camera, or custom-built Raspberry Pi cameras so technicians could share what they were experiencing on the ground with experts back at headquarters.

The client didn’t have internal development resources available with the required skill set, so they brought in Intertech consultants to develop and deploy a turnkey, user-friendly solution. The solution needed to work in a variety of situations and be capable of transmitting both video and high-resolution still-frame photos.

Process

Intertech consultants worked remotely from our Eagan, Minnesota offices. The project began by researching options for passing a video stream from a video device through pre-existing support software that is capable of screen sharing via UDP messages. From there, the consultants implemented a custom tool to allow for multiple input devices including webcam, smartphone, and Raspberry Pi cameras.

For web cameras the team developed a solution that uses DirectX communication to access the video feed and send it to the server as a series of UDP messages. The viewer application retrieves these messages and creates a video stream for those providing support, allowing them to see the same video feed in near real-time. Our expert developers used Microsoft technologies, including C#, WPF, and Visual Studio 2017 to complete the project.

Intertech’s consultants also developed a Python web application that would run on a Raspberry Pi, allowing it to stream video to any connected device via USB, WiFi Direct, standard WiFi, or standard Ethernet. The web application also created an extended interface that allows remote support personnel to access standard camera controls like brightness, contrast, resolution, high resolution still frame photos, video recording, lighting, and other features.

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Result

Intertech created the tools and communication channels for a new level of service. With marine products sold internationally, the client’s subject matter experts at headquarters can now connect seamlessly with technicians on location. The result is problems get fixed faster and maintenance issues get detected earlier.

The client also valued the expertise and experience the Intertech consultants brought to the project. Intertech’s research and consultation helped discover and design a solution that would integrate with the existing UDP-based screen sharing in the client’s customer support software.

Our Story: Intertech

From the day it was founded in 1991 by local entrepreneur Tom Salonek, Intertech has been a company with an important difference: unwavering commitment to customers, employees and the broader community through excellent work, smart workplace and financial management, and creative philanthropic involvement.

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