Transport, Power & Infrastructure Category: Zenith Awards Finalists
Sponsored by Rockwell Automation
Company: iOmniscient Pty Ltd
Project: China Fast Train Project
A Safety System was implemented in China by Australian company iOmniscient, for the China Very Fast Chain Project. The train runs from Central China to Guangzhou in the South of China.
The issue arose when drivers were unable to see if there was an obstruction on the track. The Chinese Ministry of Railways (MOR) decided to use Video Analysis Technology to detect people or objects that might intrude on the tracks.
iOmniscient installed over 3,000 cameras, its products are armed with Nuisance Alarm Minimisation System (NAMS) that can differentiate between objects and shadows.
The cameras can recognise spurious motions from small animals, moving trees, clouds and even dust storms, by using Artificial Intelligence software.There was also a unique Health Check System which advised the railways if any of the cameras were not operational for any reason.
The system works by the driver receiving images of the obstruction and has five seconds to acknowledge the alarm. If they do not react within the required time frame, the system automatically slows down and stops the train.
The company also designed a Green Camera powered by solar and wind power, with a five day rechargeable back up battery. The engineering involved the development of very advanced Artificial Intelligence software and marrying that with more traditional railway technology to make sure that the train could actually be stopped based on quality information provided by the system.
The three other shortlisted companies (two from Israel and one from the US) were able to detect obstructions on the track but had an unacceptably high false alarm rate.
Company: TruckOn Project Partners (A collaboration of Embedded Systems Australia members: NICTA, Braetec, Cohda Wireless, CPE Systems, ResTech)
Project: TruckOn – Overhead Collision Prevention
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
TruckOn is a forward-looking ‘proof-of-concept’ project to demonstrate how emerging wireless vehicle communication technologies could prevent accidents of over-height truck collides with tunnels, overpass or enclosed bridge.
The system works when an over-height vehicle breaks a height detection beam, a road side control system uses wireless vehicle communications (DSRC) to transmit to all vehicles in the vicinity the GPS location and exact time the beam was broken.
It also sends a ‘map’ of road ahead that includes; distance to the overhead infrastructure and location of the diversion. Systems on board each vehicle process this information to determine if they were guilty of tripping the detector.
The guilty vehicle’s on-board system then begins transmitting its identity, speed and other tracking information to the road side controller.
Meanwhile, its on-board system also delivers warnings to the vehicle driver, if they ignore the advice to pull over a speed control system slows the vehicle down.
The speed control is reset automatically by the driver taking a diversion or on remote command from a Transport Management Centre.
The software works on a single common platform that can deliver a variety of safety and other applications, that require Wireless Vehicle Communications via DSRC (or 3G) and GPS capabilities.
Company: Machinery Automation & Robotics and FreshBins
Project: FreshBins Pty Ltd
Location: Warnambool, Victoria
FreshBins developed a mobile system that reduces water usage, whilst removing environmental pollutants from the process of cleaning ‘wheelie bins’.The sanitisation process is completed in seconds, allowing the operator to process over 1,000 bins in an eight hour shift.
The company used a ‘Generation 3’ Unit which incorporates a mobile three-dimensional sensing robot, installed and programmed by Machinery & Robotics (MAR).
MAR combined new sensor and collector technology with an effective ozone sterilising system, to ensure the robot is able to locate and pick up the bin for cleaning regardless of bin position and orientation.
In operation, the FreshBins truck pulls up beside a bin for cleaning, which is scanned by the 3D system that can identify and locate bins in any conditions. A separate scanner identifies any moving objects within the proximity of the robot to ensure it is safe.
The robot then picks up the bin, brings it into the sanitisation booth, where the ozone generator produces, mixes and applies the ozone in the sanitisation process.
Several innovative core components were involved in this project which include; the End Effector, 3D Laser Profiler and Infra-Red Cameras, Weight Check, Integration of the controls into the cabin of the truck including CCTV screen and operator touch screen.
Company: Hero Engineering
Project: DiCOM Project Development
Location: Perth, Western Australia
AnaeCo designs and operates Alternative Waste Technology (AWT) plant to process Municipal waste to produce saleable compost, recyclable and energy.
Redirection of waste from landfill is processed using the DiCOM bioconversion process developed and patented by AnaeCo.
The company had to demonstrate the DiCOM process as a viable AWT, requiring from the outset electrical and control systems for the Demonstration facility and later the commercial scale plant.
Hero Engineering worked with AnaeCo to develop the Demonstration plant (stage 1) Electrical, control and functional safety design during 2009.
The performance trials received independent engineer’s validation of the DiCOM process in regards to product quality, effluent control (water, noise and odour emission), demonstrated plant safe operation and robust engineering processes.
During Stage 1 commissioning, the scoping for a 55,000 tpa AWT commercial scale project (Stage 2) was undertaken by AnaeCo and Hero Engineering.
Stage 2 represents a 1000 time scale up of Stage 1 and reuses process equipment and control and safety systems from Stage 1.
As a result DiCOM, developed by AnaeCo, has been accepted as a solution to process municipal waste.
Company: Xstrata Copper
Project: ESP Dust Recovery Plant
Location: Mount Isa, Queensland
Electrostatic precipitator (ESP) dust is formed as by-product of the Copper Smelting process.
The project involves the ESP dust which is reclaimed from the stockpile, transported and discharged into the leaching process in either the Waste Slurry Tank with newly formed dust from the smelter or into the Copper Solution Tank in the Leaching Plant.
The reclaim process for the stockpiled dust utilises a purpose built 15m3, 316 stainless steel agitated mixing bowl mounted on a trailer.
The first step is to collect process water to allow slurry of the dust, then travel to stockpile and collect not less than 10 tonnes of screened ESP dust from the stockpile.
The truck then returns to the Slurry Truck Bay at the smelter or the Neutralisation Truck Bay at the Leach Plant where after adding additional process water, a hydraulically powered trailer mounted pump is used to transfer the slurry into the Waste Slurry tank along with the new dust arising from the smelter or into the Copper Solution rank or at Leach Plant.
The slurry pumped into the Waste Slurry tank is leached, neutralised and the copper and gold recovered in the ESP recovery plant.
Company: Nautilus Marine and General Systems Pty Ltd
Project: SURF SOV – Improves The Tourist Swimming Experience
Location: Success Hill, Western Australia
Nautilus Marine and General Systems designed a SURF SOV which is an application of the military based SSOV, to create a safer environment for the swimming beaches with an automated interactive vision and audio response platform.
The system is a transport, power & infrastructure application that floats, it is ideal to assist the tourism industry to provide 24/7 support in the water.
The catching net lifts the swimmer or other objects out of the water when hulls move outwards to normal position.
Momentum uses four redundant hydro drives, with no exposed rudders or propellers and positioned away from the rescue area.
Company: Parasyn Controls Pty Ltd
Project: On Track With Better SCADA
Parasyn Controls assisted Queensland Rail in upgrading their SCADA system to enhance reliability.
Working closely with product vendors and Queensland Rail staff, Parasyn managed the RTU vendor firmware changes, independently validated all RTU controller firmware changes, recoded vital communications routines, set up optimum configuration parameters for DNP3 software drivers and provided improved alarm management and diagnostic information in the Traction Control SCADA System.
Parasyn worked closely with QR engineers to implement the SCADA changes to the new standard. All original and improved functional requirements were also validated on the test platform.
Recommendations by Parasyn included least risk rollout strategies to ensure system improvement costs were minimised. In addition, the next rollout of software updates meant the system would restore operator confidence.
Results show failure rates changed from a measured 40% to a minuscule 0.1% data failure rate during the stress testing. It has taken 2.5 years to isolate, identify and test resolutions for all issues. The final verdict is a robust solution using the existing infrastructure.
Not only has the core technology been retained but the massive indirect costs associated with replacing a system will never need to be borne. It took two and a half years to complete and as a result the rail company is now implementing the software and configuration changes throughout 2011.
Sponsored by Rockwell Automation
Rockwell Automation Australia and Rockwell Automation New Zealand are subsidiaries of Rockwell Automation, Inc. — a leading global provider of industrial power, automation control and information solutions that help manufacturers achieve a competitive advantage in their businesses. The company brings together leading global brands in industrial automation which include Allen-Bradley® controls and services and Rockwell Software® factory management software. Its broad product mix includes control logic systems, sensors, human-machine interfaces, drive controllers, power devices, and software.