MEASUREMENT OF TANKS IN A MANUFACTURING PROCESS

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Tank level measurement at the Renault Flins plant

LoRaWAN implementation at Renault Flins plant:
experience feedback with Stanislas Hillebrant project manager Industry 4.0

In Renault’s industrial process, it is crucial that the tanks containing raw materials are always supplied to ensure the continuity of production. Indeed, an empty tank means a production stop.

The problematic

The technician in charge of the tanks had to make a daily round on the tanks and go outside to raise the levels manually, even in winter. This operation was the source of several incidents such as measurement errors, readings not taken during absences, excessive consumption, leaks, etc.

The Renault plant in Flins (France) wanted a connected solution to monitor the levels of its fleet of 25 tanks and to know their filling rate at any time.

Stanislas Hillebrant, in charge of innovation projects for Industry 4.0 for the Flins plant, implemented with his team a connected application to monitor the filling level of the tanks based on the LoRaWAN radio frequency network.

Choice of the network

The plant chose to implement a LoRaWAN network for its reliability, autonomy, safety, low consumption and very long range! It called upon the expertise of our partner Objenious to install and maintain it.

The tanks

The tanks of the manufacturing process are buried or outside and contain liquids such as oil, fuel, acid…

The connected solution


The gauge

A Vegapuls 64 radar sensor has been installed on the tank to recover a level measurement and deliver at its output a 4-20 mA proportional analog signal. Our Press’O sensor was connected to this analog output to transmit the data on the LoRaWAN network..

The Press’O sensor

The choice went to our Press’O sensor for its adaptation to the industrial environment, its sober design, its simplicity of implementation and that it can adapt to a 4-20 mA signal! Indeed, the Press’O sensor is able to work with any type of gauge that delivers an analog output signal 0-10 V or 4-20 mA and then communicate in LoRaWAN.

The choice went to our Press’O sensor for its adaptation to the industrial environment, its sober design, its simplicity of implementation and that it can adapt to a 4-20 mA signal! Indeed, the Press’O sensor is able to work with any type of gauge that delivers an analog output signal 0-10 V or 4-20 mA and then communicate in LoRaWAN.

The interface

To retrieve the results, the Press’O sensor sends them via LoRaWAN to a Sagemcom gateway, which transmits them over the Internet to Objenious’s Spot application.

The interface displays the levels of the different tanks and sends alerts by email as soon as a critical threshold is crossed on a tank level.

Screenshot of the SpotObjenious application

Today, 20 of the 25 tanks are already connected, the long-term objective is to connect all the tanks and then move on to measurements in the AtEx zone.

The benefits of this solution

In addition to taking a step towards connected industry, the Renault Flins plant is now reaping many benefits from this application:

  • Tank levels are known at all times.
  • The information is centralized: all the actors who need these tanks have access at any time to the information, the hierarchy, the different departments of the factory.
  • There are no more incidents of gauge errors, supply disruptions or leaks detected too late.
  • The technician’s working conditions have been greatly improved.

 

A great application of IoT connected solution for the industry that improved the working conditions of the tank manager and allowed him to perform a level measurement every hour!

The advantages of the Press’O sensor:

  • A stand-alone sensor that works with many gauges.
  • A very large autonomy, it allows the remote reading of information for 5 years on the basis of 24 measurements and one radio transmission per day.

The Press’O sensor can measure different types of levels:

  • Water storage: water tower, water tank, rainwater tank and reservoir, groundwater, retention basin, …
  • Storage of energy fluids: underground or above ground heating oil tank, gas tank, …

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