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Wednesday, 7 November 2018


Leading mining company reactivates mine site - employs cost-effective telemetry solution to assist with EPA compliance.

One of Australia’s leading independent coal exploration and mining companies recently re-engaged one of their mine sites from caretaker to ‘active’ status.  

After a number of inactive years, a lot of equipment needed either repair or replacement to comply with both operational and EPA requirements. 

One such concern raised by the EPA was the existing water quality monitoring equipment - specifically used for monitoring waste water runoff. 

With waste water potentially passing over the spillway and into surrounding waterways during significant rainfall events, this could potentially impact negatively upon the surrounding environment. It is therefore crucial to continually monitor the water quality prior to such an event occurring.

Initial estimates obtained by the mining company determined that to it would cost somewhere in the vicinity of $40K to repair the existing water quality monitoring equipment on site. 

The Solution

They turned to Pacific Data Systems for a solution.

PDS were able to provide a complete new water quality monitoring solution utilising their PDS’ SatVUE satellite telemetry solution. The sensors integrated with the SatVUE solution included pH, Turbidity, EC, water depth and flow rate. 

All equipment as supplied for less than a 1/4 of the cost previously quoted to repair the existing equipment. 

Yielding immediate results
Since installing the SatVUE system, the mining company is receiving up-to-date data that can be viewed via a remote web portal, which makes data visible even when off site. 

Alarm functionality is included should any predetermined thresholds be reached when monitoring the aforementioned parameters.

The company is also experiencing peace of mind, that they are complying with EPA requirements, and not impacting negatively on the surrounding environment.
Planning ahead
As a result of how well the initial deployment has gone, the company is already looking to employ the SatVUE unit solution across several of their other mine sites.



Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here




SatVUE - Technology that delivers remotely!

Developed by Pacific Data Systems, SatVUE is a compact, rugged device which collects and transmits data via the Inmarsat global satellite network.

PDS had initially developed their SatVUE technology for use within the mining industry, but due to the device’s ability to integrate with a wide range of sensors / transmitters, they had since expanded their focus to also assist with monitoring applications within construction, agricultural and other environmental sectors.

At a cost of just 50c per monitoring site, per day for data transmission it makes for a very cost-effective solution, and frees-up personnel to focus on other tasks onsite.

Wednesday, 31 October 2018


Ethylene & Airborne Pathogen Removal: Zimbabwean Fruits Exporter Reduces Citrus Decay to Less Than 2 Percent

“We have done a few trials with the clementines which were packed in week 19...Four cartons were pulled out in week 33 (14 weeks after packing) and checked for mold and fruit unfit for sale. There was less than 1 % decay".

John Perrot
General Manager (Forrester Citrus Zimbabwe)

Forrester Estate from Zimbabwe evaluates the efficiency of Miatech`s Bio Turbo – solution for removing ethylene and airborne pathogens in cold rooms to understand the possibility of expanding market operations.

About 90% of citrus losses are caused by a single type of fungus called “Penicillium digitatum”, more commonly known as “Green Mold”. One infected fruit is enough to generate billions of spores which fly around the cold room infecting healthy fruit items. This was no exception with Forrester Estate. 

The company produces clementines, lemons, and vegetable peas for export to Europe. They faced issues with mold spreading on many fruits and vegetables, especially the citrus fruit. There were also problems with ethylene causing fast ripening, shrivelling, and unpleasant decay odor.

Effective, Patented Technology

Bio Turbo uses patented four-stage air purification process which effectively removes ethylene and 99.5% of airborne bacteria. 

Although Bio Turbo technology uses Ozone in one of its four stages to destroy ethylene and airborne pathogens, ozone is never released into the cold room, which makes Bio Turbo technology completely safe for humans, creating a better and safer work environment for people too. 

Decay Reduced from 25% to under 2%
After more than 2 years of continuous use and good results, they decided to conduct trials to evaluate the efficiency of Bio Turbo.
John Perrot, General Manager of Forrester Citrus Zimbabwe wrote a letter to Coldroom Ozone (Pvt) Ltd – our Miatech dealer in Zimbabwe, where he described in detail their findings. 

“We have done a few trials with the clementines which were packed in week 19 (7th may). Four cartons were pulled out in week 33 (14 weeks after packing) and checked for mold and fruit unfit for sale. There was less than 1 % decay.
The fruit was checked again in another 4 cartons in Week 42 (17th October) still we found less than 2% decay. Before Forrester purchased a Bio Turbo we would face 25% decay in any stored fruit. 

The Bio Turbo has changed our approach to store more fruit for the regional markets for clementines and lemons”, tells John Perrot.

Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here

*article originally published Oct 30, 2018 on freshplaza.com 



Want to know more?


Contact us today to to find out how Miatech's Bio Turbo product range can assist with your own application.

For this, and more or our post harvest technology solutions, visit www.FreshView.com.au 

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

Consultant helps mining company cut remote monitoring costs by 80%



Consultant helps mining company cut remote monitoring costs by 80%

‘We looked at a few options at the time, but none fitted our needs. Radio transmission meant setting up and maintaining a string of stations over kilometers of rough terrain, which was out of the question cost-wise, and the other satellite-based systems used outdated technology that needed a lot of tinkering to make work. SatVue looked like exactly what we needed - elegant, smart, fast to install, up and transmitting in seconds and cost-effective to run’
John Carson
Senior Hydrogeologist

ConsultCorp* is a global group which provides practical solutions for companies involved in mining, infrastructure, energy, urban growth and natural resources. In this case, its client was a major mining company.

High cost and risk

The mine’s location was the first challenge, being situated in inaccessible, mountainous terrain which was out of 3G and 4G network coverage and right next door to sensitive environmental areas.

As part of its environmental governance commitment, the company needed to monitor groundwater levels at seven sites around the mine, monitoring continuously but collecting data once per week.
  

To meet this requirement, ConsultCorp sent two of its people to site each week. This was costly for its client and risky for ConsultCorp’s people, especially in extreme weather which was known to include snow.


Expensive or outdated  
As the senior hydrogeologist, John Carson said, ‘We looked at a few options at the time, but none fitted our needs. Radio transmission meant setting up and maintaining a string of stations over kilometers of rough terrain, which was out of the question cost-wise, and the other satellite-based systems used outdated technology that needed a lot of tinkering to make work.’

Elegant, smart and fast to install
Carson decided to call Thermofisher Scientific, a leading provider of specialist equipment, who recommended Pacific Data Systems, who had been developing monitoring systems for three decades. At the time, PDS was developing satellite-based system called SatVue which was based on advanced technology and was an off-the-shelf ‘plug & play’ device
As Carson says, ‘SatVue looked like exactly what we needed - elegant, smart, fast to install, up and transmitting in seconds and cost-effective to run. More than that we could be involved in its final design, which was very valuable '. ConsultCorp worked with PDS’s R&D team in the final stages of development, and ended up choosing the SatVue bore model for its mining client.


True to specs

Carson’s role has since changed and it was another Senior Hydro-geologist, Justin Laird, who oversaw the implementation of the new SatVue system across the client’s seven sites. 

Laird said that, although it needed a little fine-tuning beforehand to convert pressure readings to water levels, the actual SatVue installation was very fast: ‘It took only about five minutes, most of which was the physical installation. The SatVue device took seconds to work: we just hit the power button’.

80% reduction in costs

Looking back, Laird is quick to point out the impact of automated remote monitoring for his mining client. For him, it wasn’t just a matter of money, but one of safety too.

‘We used to send two of our guys out every week and they’d take a whole day to get around all seven sites. Now it’s costing us less than $30 a month for satellite. Including the initial capex, that’s a saving of over 80%, and our guys aren’t being put at risk anymore, too.’


Monitor Multiple Sites via a single Remote Web Portal


‘SatVue does what it says’

Laird says that the device does exactly what PDS said it would and the payback was spot on too: ‘Satvue does what it says – reliable, continuous cost-effective monitoring – and the payback was under three months just as PDS said’.
Laird expects that site visits won’t be a thing of the past entirely, but will be reduced by 99%.  He expects that ConsultCorp will probably visit the sites every two years to replace the batteries, but feels it’s a small price to pay, in comparison to the expense and risk of the previous routine.
Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here

*This client has asked for names to be changed for privacy reasons




To contact us regarding this solution, visit www.pacdatasys.com.au or the SatVUE product website at www.SatVUE.com.au

Tuesday, 16 October 2018



Diesel Engine Condition Monitoring

‘...the organisation is now able to expand their business opportunites to reach clientele operating equipment from remote locations...’
An established organisation who specialises in diesel engine reconditioning and protection systems sought to add remote access, and improve visibility, when it came to real-time monitoring of engine parameters.

It is important to monitor the condition of diesel engines to ensure they are running under optimum conditions, and not under any stress. This involves monitoring pressure, temperature, liquid level, overspeed, time and vibration. 

When certain predetermined thresholds are reached, it is important to respond quickly, a process best handled by automating start/stop functionality to control the engine under these measured conditions. 

An integral part of the organisation’s business is the manufacture of Control Panel displays - solutions that monitor, control & display (locally) real-time diesel engine conditions.
Control Panel - data now accessible remotely

Remote visibility allows rapid response

One major challenge the organisation faces is that a significant number of their clients have their diesel engines deployed in remote locations, and thus, it is often the case that local workers are not always onsite to monitor engine performance - and those that are may be not be adequately trained to respond!

The organisation felt that by adding a remote ‘watchdog’ service, this would allow swift - and correct - action to be taken should any issues arise with diesel engine performance.
This is a service which would significantly reduce operational costs to their clients.
Technology that delivers - remotely!
Another challenge encountered was that many of the remote monitoring sites were outside of reliable - or non-existent - 3G infrastructure. It is for this reason that the organisation turned to the SatVUE Smart Remote Monitoring Solution. 

With the condition monitoring sensors already included as part of the Control Panel system, the role of the SatVUE is three-fold; handling the two-way satellite communications, enabling remote access via secure, user-defined web portal, and added alarm functionality.

Alert capabilities ensure timely response
By monitoring the parameters output by the Control Panel, the SatVUE has been programmed to email alerts to multiple staff, in the event of any predetermined thresholds being breached.

The Result?
Since the implementation of the remote access SatVUE solution, benefits are being reaped by both the organisation and their clients. 

Firstly, the organisation is now able to expand their business opportunities to reach clientele operating equipment from remote locations, and secondly, with the diesel engine conditions monitored automatically and remotely, their clients are free to focus on other operational tasks at a local level.They are now looking to implement the SatVUE system as a solution to any further remote monitoring requirements.

Monitor Multiple Sites via a single Remote Web Portal
The Benefits
• expanded business opportunites to reach clientele operating equipment from remote locations 
• remote visibility reduces need for manual site inspections 
• custody of data and minimisation of data transposition errors 
• remote access from any web-enabled device 
• ease of installation

Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here
*This client has asked for names to be changed for privacy reasons






To contact us regarding this solution, visit www.pacdatasys.com.au

Wednesday, 10 October 2018



Prominent Australian Beef Cattle Producer Saves on Livestock Water Supply

"We couldn’t risk relying on 3G or 4G due to the unreliable network coverage on some of the tank sites. Radio comms didn’t work for us either. For as little as 50c a day per site, SatVUE has allowed us to focus on other tasks around the property - rather than several-hour round trips to manually check water levels on a regular basis".
Brendan Huff - Manager Livestock
CattleCorp*

When it comes to high quality meat products, Australian company CattleCorp* is one of the largest, vertically integrated ‘paddock to plate’ supply chain organisations in the world.

One of the many challenges that comes with maintaining such a large livestock operation is the effective management of water stock (levels), and overall quality of water, for any owner’s valuable livestock. 

Whether it be through evaporation due to harsh environmental conditions, or equipment issues such as a pump failure, broken pipeline, or leaking water tanks, essential water reserves can go dry and livestock can perish rapidly. 

Yet with potentially millions of livestock scattered across hectares of remote, dry country, it is a costly and time-consuming exercise to conduct manual inspections of water tanks, turkey nests or pumps across multiple sites.

Large site, significant challenges


It was for this reason that CattleCorp began investigations into how remote monitoring technologies could automate the reporting process, ultimately assisting in managing their livestock tank water levels in a more cost effective manner.
Their search began logically - looking at technology solutions that utilised 3G / 4G communications. However, it soon became apparent that several of the sites where livestock water reserves were located had unreliable network coverage - in some cases, none at all.

Long-range wireless RF (radio) communications was also considered but it was determined that signal strength would be an issue due to the undulating environment as well as the need to, (as with the 3G / 4G solutiuon) purchase multiple hardware components for each and every one of the monitoring sites.

It was these challenges that lead CattleCorp to consider satellite-based telemetry technology.


Technology that delivers - remotely!
Pacific Data Systems had recently developed SatVUE, a compact, rugged device which collects and transmits data via the Inmarsat global satellite network. 


PDS had intially developed their SatVUE technology for use within the mining industry, but due to the device’s ability to integrate with a wide range of sensors / transmitters, they had since expanded their focus to also assist with monitoring applications within the agricultural livestock sector.
Trials yield immediate resultsUp until this point, CattleCorp had been deploying personnel to regularly conduct manual level measurements of their livestock water tanks - a costly exercise due to the number of tanks and their remote locations. 

They purchased a number of SatVUE units and set about conducting trials to automate the monitoring process. 

In just a short period of time post-installation, the SatVUE system automatically alerted CattleCorp operators that there was a drastic reduction in water level at one of the tank sites. This suggested that there was a leak from the tank, and as such they deployed personnel to visit the site. 

Investigations confirmed that there was indeed a leak and, although the leak was repaired, within the next 24 hours another alert was issued - which was later revealed to be another leak from the same tank. 

CattleCorp also added a rain gauge and flow meter to round out their requirements to manage their water supply.



Monitor Multiple Sites via a single Remote Web Portal

Planning ahead
As a result of these trials, CattleCorp have already allocated a portion of next finaincial year’s budget on purchasing more SatVUE units, with the intention of deploying this technology across several more of their properties. 

At a cost of just 50c per monitoring site, per day for data transmission it makes for a very cost-effective solution, and frees-up personnel to focus on other tasks around the property.

Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here


*This client has asked for names to be changed for privacy reasons






To contact us regarding this solution, visit www.pacdatasys.com.au

Monday, 24 September 2018



Artesian Well Monitoring - Portable Monitoring System for Flow and Pressure

“The system has performed really well for our purposes. The meter works well and the logging system is simple to use and pretty much idiot proof. We could not be happier with the results”.
John Thamos - Operations Manager

Pacific Data Systems Australia were approached to produce a system that could monitor the change in status of an artesian well in the Central Queensland Region. 

The requirement was to measure flow and pressure from the artesian well and to log the data for further analysis back at base. It was intended to measure the flow and pressure when the well was operating as well as the back pressure when the exit valve was closed.

The Solution


The Artesian Well Monitoring System uses a single multivariable vortex flow meter for measuring volumetric flow, temperature, pressure, density, and mass flow.

Integrating pressure and temperature into the vortex flow meter simplifies system complexity and helps minimise initial capital costs. The spool piece is available in sizes ranging from ½” to 8” diameters to suit varying pipe sizes. The flow meter is rated to 20 bar pressure and flanged ANSI 150lb. Larger sizes are available.

All flow, temperature, pressure and density calculations are performed in the integral electronics of the multivariable flow meter and transmitted to a dataTaker DT80 data logger via Modbus.

The dataTaker DT80 data logger, along with a 7.2 Ahr battery, mains charger and on/off switch, is mounted within a rugged, weatherproof Pelican enclosure.

Data is retrieved from the Artesian Well Monitoring System by insertion of a USB flash drive into the USB port on the front of the DT80.


Rugged, weatherproof Pelican enclosure allows for ease of portability 


Additional Features Available
Pacific Data Systems can customise the Artesian Well Monitoring System to meet different monitoring requirements. Consider adding the following features to your monitoring system:

• Remote access via 3G or satellite telemetry
• Additional environmental sensors e.g. weather / water quality
• Pole mount kit and permanent enclosure for long-term monitoring


Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here



To contact us regarding this solution, visit www.pacdatasys.com.au

Tuesday, 18 September 2018












Improving Safety Procedures for Flow Measurement of V-notch Weirs

"In addition to the SatVUE solution minimalising potential safety concerns, the organisation immediately obtained significant improvements to their operational procedures due to improved data visibility."

Typically installed in open channels, the function of a V-notch weir is to determine discharge (flow rate) from a body of water, such as a dam or stream.


The basic principle in determining the flow rate is that the discharge of water is directly related to the water depth above the crotch (bottom) of the V; this distance is called head (h). 

Due to the V-notch design, even small changes in discharge cause a large change in depth allowing more accurate head measurement.
Further calculations are also factored in such as open channel flow rate and the average depth between the streambed and base of the weir crest (P).

Calculating V-notch weir flow measurements
 


Improving operational efficiency
A large North QLD power station were seeking ways to improve Workplace Health & Safety procedures, and operational efficiency, when it comes to V-notch weir flow monitoring on their dams. 

Previously, the workers had been using boats to access V-notch weirs to manually conduct level measurements in order to calculate flow rates. 

This was deemed to be an unnecessary safety risk due to potential instability when navigating small vessels to obtain manual level measurements. 

It was also very cost-prohibitive due to the number of sites that had to be monitored.


Technology that delivers - remotely!
Investigations by the power station into an automated, more cost-effective and ultimately safer method of obtaining this information lead them to the SatVUE Smart Remote Monitoring Solution. 

By installing a SatVUE and submersible level sensor at one of the V-notch weir locations, level measurements are obtained and transmitted at hourly intervals, via satellite communications. 

With the SatVUE programmed to also calculate the flow rate, this data can be viewed both ‘back at base’ and offsite via a remote web portal.

SatVUE technology - satellite communications ensure reliable remote access

Alert capabilities ensure timely response

Alarms have also been programmed into the SatVUE system enabling email alerts to be sent to site staff should any predetermined should any thresholds be breached.

The Result?
In addition to the SatVUE solution minimalising potential safety concerns, the organisation immediately obtained significant improvements to their operational procedures due to improved data visibility. 

This will ultimately result in more effective and timely responses to any issues that could potentially arise. They are now looking to implement the SatVUE system across multiple sites that they operate from.
Monitor Multiple Sites via a single Remote Web Portal

The Benefits• peace of mind that Workplace OH & S requirements are being met 
• improve operational efficiency and provide greater visibility 
• custody of data and minimisation of data transposition errors 
• remote access from any web-enabled device 
• ease of installation

Download
Download a PDF copy of this case study here




Have other applications? Due to its flexible sensor integration the SatVUE solution is ideal for monitoring.
Water - ground, surface, waste, irrigation, bores, tanks, turkey’s nests, pipelines, channels, streams or dams for levels, quality, evaporation, flow & pressure; seawater for quality, currents & tides. 

Air - for dust, gases, temperature, humidity, pressure, solar radiation, wind speed & direction. 

Soil - for moisture & contaminants. 

Oil, gas, & other fluids - in pipelines and tanks for levels and pumps for status & control & more! 

Want to know more?

For more information on the SatVUE solution, visit www.SatVUE.com.au