none
none

ENERGY HARVESTER SHEDS LIGHT ON CONVEYORS

07-12-2016
by 
in 

Energy harvesting has been a hot topic in the world of microelectronics for some time. The ability to draw microamp-level currents seemingly from thin air and use them to energise low-power circuits is very appealing, and has enabled the design of a raft of battery-free microelectronic devices, including many “wearable” gadgets.

However, one Australian company has set its sights a little higher, and has come up with a system that exploits the spare kinetic energy available from the humble conveyor belt.

The Energy Harvester Lighting and Control System is the brainchild of Wollongong-based KRS Design, and was originally developed for use in the mining sector to provide power for illumination and security in long underground coal mining shafts. Now proven in that application, the company is keen to move on and apply the system to other materials handling conveyors.

The KRS Design Energy Harvester comes as a “plug-and-play” system that can be attached to virtually any conveyor. The generator is attached to any idler roll on the bottom return path of the conveyor, and is typically capable of harvesting 150W.

This power is fed to the system controller, which distributes it to LED lights, sensors, cameras, communications circuits etc as required. In all, the company reckons that each harvester unit will supply sufficient power to provide these services to a 100m-long run of conveyor. Multiple systems can be installed on longer conveyors as required.

Importantly, the generator does not load the conveyor during startup. And it is fully protected against overcurrent and overtemperature.

The system comes with comprehensive control software that can be linked to an existing Scada system via Modbus TCP/IP or can be accessed remotely using a dedicated web server via the controller’s onboard Ethernet and Wi-Fi interfaces.

All the electronics are housed in a rugged stainless-steel enclosure, together with a maintenance-free backup battery to keep essential services powered when the conveyor is not operating.

Since developing the system, KRS Design has been trialling it at three locations around New South Wales, all without failure. The longest running trial is above ground at a coal-processing plant at Lithgow, which has been running reliably for the past 15 months.

KRS Design
02 4262 2572

www.krs-design.com

 

Related news & editorials

  1. 3-pin DC/DC convertor
    24.01.2018
    24.01.2018
    by      In
    RS Components has a new range of highly integrated power modules that will help equipment designers save space, component costs, and development time.
    The Würth Elektronik MagI³C family of highly integrated DC/DC convertor modules combine a switching regulator, control circuitry and inductor in the... Read More
  2. The optoNCDT 1420 laser triangulation sensor
    23.01.2018
    23.01.2018
    by      In
    MicroEpsilon has come up with a novel time- and space-saving colour measurement system for liquid paint that can be directly integrated into the paint production process.
    Traditional methods for measuring the colour of liquid paint have involved painting a test area and only performing the... Read More
  3. RS Pro air tools
    23.01.2018
    23.01.2018
    by      In
    RS Components has added more than 70 new air tools and accessories to its RS Pro equipment range. New tools include air impact wrenches, drills, saws, ratchets, grinders, sanders and polishers. Accessories include sockets, chisel sets, saw blades, keyless chucks, grinding wheels and sanding discs.... Read More
  4. Telesteps telescopic ladder
    19.01.2018
    19.01.2018
    by      In
    Warequip Solutions has set up a new online store to showcase its latest range of telescopic ladders together with the Plano Europe Technics range of tool storage and tool safety products.
    Worksafetools.com.au is the first store in Australia to release the world famous Telesteps telescopic ladder... Read More