Engineering components provider BMG’s Light Materials Handling division has introduced a new condition monitoring system, the Plast iCOF, which has been developed to automatically monitor the coefficient of friction in bottling or canning lines, ensuring consistently high productivity levels.
The Plast iCOF device continuously measures the coefficient of friction, to ensure efficient handling and flow of all container types. These include polyethylene terephthalate, glass and cans.
Variations in the coefficient of friction are reliable indicators of changing conditions and even pollution of the conveyor, especially in dry running lines.
“BMG continually extends its product range to keep abreast of pristine safety, hygiene, sustainability and efficient total cost of ownership requirements in the food and beverage sector,” says BMG Light Materials Handling division business unit manager Ryan Forsyth.
He adds that a permanent control process of real-time monitoring of the line condition – independently of operator intervention – helps to maintain optimum conditions, ensuring high efficiency of conveying in food and beverage plants.
The Plast iCOF device is a complete unit, with sliders, which can be mounted on a conveyor and integrated into the line control system, to temporarily or continuously monitor friction.
The condition monitoring unit is programmed to collect performance data, obtain data for troubleshooting or to act as continuous input for the line controls.
It can also be used as a standalone or portable device for spot measurements, without the need for operator intervention.
Obtained data is then used to calculate the average value, as well as the standard deviation and the trend. These values trigger an alarm if preset limits are reached and based on this signal the user can check the situation and take corrective action before efficiency is compromised.
Another key feature is an easy-to-define optimum cleaning regime called ‘Smart Cleaning’. Long-term line conditions can be analysed using data obtained through ethernet or a data communications protocol or Modbus connection.
Forsyth concludes that all BMG’s light materials handling products for food handling, bottling and packaging applications meet the highest conveying and packaging standards in terms of reliability, flexibility and consistent quality and hygiene controls.