APPLICATION STUDY: Batching Customization
By: Kelly Buck
For customers looking to increase batching effectiveness, semi-automatic batching solutions are an incredible opportunity to increase efficiency without the addition of complex automated control mechanisms. Our Industrial Applications team recently installed a solution to fit a plastic pellet manufacture’s unique process in a safe and intuitive way.
Plastic Pellet Manufacturing
This customer is measuring raw ingredients which are added in a particular order to the batch. Small ingredients are measured out on a bench scale and included into a larger tote prior to inclusion in the batch. Once the large tote materials are weighed and incorporated into the batch tank, feeders supply larger volume product into the batching tank. Recipes also need to be adjusted from time to time, depending on raw material available at the time of batch.
A METTLER TOLEDO IND780 is used for the floor scale, bench scale, and tank weigh module control. A customized TE version of Batch*Plus!* is used for user prompting on the terminal to ensure that each product is added according to the recipe. Barcode scanning of raw material and weight verification through the terminal ensured the proper product and amount is included.
Due to space restrictions and the weight of the full tote, the Carlton Industrial Automation team installed the floor scale into an existing pit with a scissor lift to help dump the tote into the batching tank. For operator safety, the scissor lift can only be operated when weight is present on the platform. This is done entirely through controls programmed into the terminal.
The feeder system is also controlled for this application through the IND780. By having the feeder control be part of the recipe process on the terminal, feeders will only turn on at the approved times in the process. With integrated weigh modules and real time drip calculations, the exact amount of product is added every time. This eliminates the possibility for error and batch loss.
BatchPlus! RecipeEditor is utilized for advanced recipe editing capabilities. This program ran on a computer in the control room and communicates directly with the IND780 for appropriate user prompting. The customer adjusts the recipes in house without having to outsource or reprogram the full batching system and process.
By running all aspects of this operation through a dedicated batching terminal, we ensure that processes are followed every time, even if those processes change. Advanced terminals, such as the IND780 used on this project, still can communicate with PLC systems to ensure that data and controls could still be centralized as productions grow.
- IND780 controlling 3 scales with user prompting and i/o handling running a specialized TE version of BatchPlus!
- BatchPlus! recipe editor
- METTLER TOLEDO 2158 Floor Scale
- METTLER TOELDO Bench Scale
- Weigh Modules
- Barcode scanner
- PC For recipe editing