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25 years strong, P.S.I. is adding tire pressure monitoring to successful tire inflation system

An employee from Velociti works to retrofit the P.S.I. automatic tire inflation system onto a trailer during a demonstration at P.S.I.’s San Antonio location on Oct. 10. The system can be installed on any trailer in under 4 hours.

Long known for its automatic tire inflation system (ATIS), made popular through a partnership that led to the development of the Meritor MTIS, Pressure Systems International (P.S.I.) is adding a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) to its portfolio of solutions to help fleets more effectively manage tire maintenance.

Expected to launch early next year, TireView will be available alongside its current ATIS solution, Jim Sharkey, vice president of global sales and marketing, told attendees to the Meritor/P.S.I. Annual Fleet Technology Event in San Antonio earlier this week.

“We view TPMS and ATIS not as competitive solutions, but as complementary solutions,” Sharkey said.

TireView is the result of a deal P.S.I. made in the spring of 2017 to acquire Truck Systems Technologies (TST). TST provided TPMS and related telematics solutions primarily to the RV market. P.S.I. utilized TST technology in testing its own products before acquiring the company. The integration of TST led to the development of TireView for the commercial transportation market.

TireView will feature sensors and an in-cab dashboard to help fleets and drivers monitor tire health. This will include a digital version of P.S.I’s ThermAlert system, launching early in 2019, which notifies drivers of an overheating condition that could lead to a fire or tire failure.

P.S.I. is working to integrate all its products with leading telematics systems for further ease of use. There are many current systems already integrated including Orbcomm, SkyBitz, FleetLocate by Spireon and Phillips Connect Technologies.

Sharkey said that ThermAlert is now standard with the P.S.I. ATIS system and can “prevent collateral damage and rebuild [of the] wheel end” due to problems.

P.S.I.’s ATIS monitors tire inflation pressure and will utilize air from the vehicle’s air brake system to inflate a tire that is losing air until the driver can safely reach a location to fix or replace the tire. According to Velociti, which installs the systems in under 4 hours for P.S.I. and Meritor at customer locations, the average trailer savings is $2,235 annually with the system. That includes about $700 for tire-related downtime or replacement, $480 in maintenance savings, $280 in treadwear savings, and $775 in fuel savings.

Al Cohn, director of new market development and engineering support for P.S.I., said a tire that is underinflated and has 18% more rubber hitting the road suffers a 3.5% hit to fuel economy.

During the event, Tim Musgrave, president & CEO of P.S.I., talked about the family culture the company embodies and how that has led to the successes it has seen over its 25 years in business.

“I try to shake hands with each employee everyday and I care about them personally, but more importantly, I want them to know that the company cares for them,” he said. “When an employee leaves, we want them to get a job they wouldn’t have been able to get if they weren’t [learning at P.S.I.].”

A few years ago, P.S.I. announced a college reimbursement program for its employees, and Musgrave said the program’s first success story is set to graduate from the University of Texas San Antonio in the spring. The employee, identified only as Chad by Musgrave, will graduate with an accounting degree and is now employed in P.S.I.’s accounting department.

With 1.4 million ATIS systems now sold, Musgrave said that the success of the company is owed to its values. “There is no small deed that is not rewarded it you give it,” he said.


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Brian Straight

Brian Straight covers general transportation news and leads the editorial team as Managing Editor. A journalism graduate of the University of Rhode Island, he has covered everything from a presidential election, to professional sports and Little League baseball, and for more than 10 years has covered trucking and logistics. Before joining FreightWaves, he was previously responsible for the editorial quality and production of Fleet Owner magazine and Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife and two kids and spends his time coaching his son’s baseball team, golfing with his daughter, and pursuing his never-ending quest to become a professional bowler.