Case Study: Plastic Granulate Level Monitoring

Case Study: Plastic Granulate Level Monitoring

Retrofitting Ultrasonic Level Sensors for Efficient Plastic Granulate Inventory Management

A plastic manufacturer lacked real-time visibility of inventory in day silos as limit-value rotary paddle detectors were installed. A continuous plastic granulate level monitoring and measurement system was required to precisely track inventory and help improve process management. 

Solution

The retrofit aimed to enhance accuracy and real-time monitoring while providing seamless integration with existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for efficient purchasing planning.

Plastic granulate level monitoring

Figure 1: Ultrasonic level sensors installed in daisy chain on manhole covers.

System Configuration: The chosen non-contact ultrasonic level sensors from ABM are self-cleaning and operate at a frequency of 45 kHz, providing precise measurements in the challenging conditions of plastic granulate silos. The narrow silos are 5 m (16.40 ft) high and 2 m (6.56 ft) in diameter, filled laterally. The sensors are installed in daisy chain on manhole covers. The sensors’ self-adjusting technology eliminates false echoes from the silos walls. 

Parameter Settings: To achieve optimal performance, ABM’s experienced local partner configured specialized parameter values to ensure the sensors delivered accurate and reliable measurement results for the application.

Integration with ERP Software: The measurement data obtained from the sensors is seamlessly fed into the facility’s network. Integration with ERP software has enabled the customer to incorporate this real-time data into their purchasing planning. This integration ensures that procurement decisions are informed by accurate and up-to-date information on inventory levels.

Results

The retrofit yielded excellent measurement results, giving the customer a comprehensive overview of the day’s stock. The continuous monitoring system offers real-time data, enabling the facility to track inventory levels precisely. This newfound transparency has significantly improved inventory management processes.

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