The countdown has started! Only a few weeks are left until the new version of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) takes effect on July 1, 2016. Among other things, it will require shippers whose names appear on the bill of lading to verify the gross mass of each container before removing it from the terminal.
The new magnetic fSENS MLS force sensor from Hirschmann MCS provides a new, innovative way to efficiently comply with the new requirement: weighing containers by indirectly measuring the force they apply to the twistlock during loading. This approach delivers many benefits and can be flexibly implemented no matter whether you use an RTG, RMG or STS crane, a reach stacker, or a straddle carrier.
Static or dynamic weighing takes only moments, and the system can be quickly and easily integrated into existing material-handling processes. It also eliminates the need to laboriously add up individual weights.
A New Approach to Measurement
For this solution, Hirschmann MCS relies on contactless magnetic measurement. The fSENS MLS is installed above the twistlock bush, surrounding the twistlock without actually touching it. The twistlock stretches when a load is applied, then contracts to its initial state when unloaded. The sensor generates a magnetic field that is altered by the stretching of the twistlock, and the sensor calculates the force by measuring this change. Weights can be accurately determined within a tolerance of less than one percent. The contactless measurement approach also reliably prevents zero drift when weighing heavier loads.
The fSENS MLS is a very robust product with a long service life. Because the sensor itself is not directly subjected to any forces, it cannot be damaged, bent, or broken no matter how heavy the load is. Nor does it move when the twistlock is locked or unlocked. It is therefore impossible for constantly changing loads to wear it out or cause its failure, for instance by breaking a cable. It isn’t even necessary to remove the fSENS MLS in order to replace the twistlock.
The fSENS MLS boasts an IP67 protection rating and is resistant to saltwater. Its electromagnetic compatibility complies with the 2004/108/EC directive.
Easy Installation as Part of a Reliable System
For weighing containers, Hirschmann MCS integrates the fSENS MLS in a complete system comprising other TÜV-certified components. Its heart is a cSCALE controller that acts as a scale. Both the controller and the fSENS MLS have been certified by OIML (International Organization of Legal Metrology).
All it takes to install and use the system is a power source. Other modifications and additions, including a communication link to the terminal operating system, are also easy to implement. The fSENS MLS can be additionally used to measure overloads.
Greater Competitiveness for Port Operators
Port operators can gain a competitive edge by offering shippers in-port weighing facilities as an additional service. And they can only win with solutions from Hirschmann MCS. This former member of the PAT-Krüger Group has accumulated half a century’s worth of experience and technical expertise in connection with port applications, both as a supplier of OEM equipment and for the aftermarket.
Hirschmann Mobile Machine Control Solutions (MCS) is a business unit of Hirschmann Automation and Control GmbH and a brand of U.S.-based Belden Inc.
Hirschmann MCS is the world market leader in safe load indication for telescopic and lattice-boom cranes and a specialist in robust controllers for mobile machines. As one of the leading systems suppliers, the company sets standards in innovative automation platforms for mobile applications in harsh environments.
Drawing on expertise and experience gained during more than 40 years, the team of Hirschmann MCS enables communication between people and machines.
450 employees develop, optimize, and produce product and system solutions at three locations in Germany, the United States, and China. These include software and hardware for sensors, controllers, and consoles for mobile machines and applications.
As a reliable, innovative, and flexible provider of leading-edge technology, high-quality products, and first-rate services, Hirschmann MCS is committed to ensuring that today’s components and solutions already comply with tomorrow’s specific safety requirements and generally valid standards.