Following on from the successful test of the Pro-360-HC in our workshop the guys at Osbit and Hyserve have now installed it on the crane of this mighty wind turbine installation vessel. It’s being used to fit the yellow turbine jackets onto the sea bed foundations. Each jacket weighs 1100 tonnes. The Pro-360 is driving a hydraulic pump that operates a clamping ring.
We were asked if we could add a feedback voltage input to our software so that the controller would respond to the input from a position sensor, the aim being to create a really powerful servo mechanism. We’re pleased to say that we’ve done it, here’s a short video of a very powerful linear actuator behaving just like a radio control servo. This software will be able to go in our Pro-100, Pro-160, and Pro-360 controllers, so if you need a 360A servo give us a call.
Another great project that we’re chuffed to be involved with. The guys at www.SeaweedGeneration.com are farming seaweed to capture and store CO2. We supplied one of our Pro-160s to control the winch on this prototype catamaran in Antigua. Shame they didn’t need on site tech support though!
Here’s a Turbo Caddy golf buggy in the middle of a controller replacement operation. One of our Pro-160s went in a treat, and the patient is up and running again. We found a design flaw with the original wiring, the battery plugs are not colour coded, it’s easy to reverse them and apply reverse polarity to the electronics!
While we can’t be too specific about the details….Some say that Barbies’ car in the latest movie might just be sporting some 4QD gear! All we know is that it’s very pink.
Many of you will know that I tend to bang on about motor noise suppression, my stern lectures are often met with a resigned smile and promises to fit some in the future. Well this week we had a really interesting case that highlighted the importance of taking this seriously.
The Lord Raglan is a tourist boat running on the Brecon Canal. It is unusual in that it has a rudder, motor, and propeller at each end, it doesn’t turn around in the narrow canal, the helmsman just turns off one motor, locks one rudder and goes to the other end to drive back.
It has a single battery bank feeding one Pro-360-HV and Lynch LEM-200 motor at each end. At one end the installation has been fine, but at the other end there have been three controller failures. We spent a day there this week looking to figure out what was causing the problems.
As soon as we opened the engine bay at the problem end the cause was apparent – there were no noise suppression components fitted to the motor. However these were also missing from the other end which did not have problems, so what was the difference?
Looking into the routing of the motor wires we found that they had been run directly on top of the battery wires feeding the problem controller. The motor wires are carrying a large current that is being switched on and off very quickly, this, along with the lack of noise suppression was inducing noise into the battery wires for the controller and causing mosfet latch-up to occur.
The solution was to fit an extra section of trunking to allow the motor wires to be routed away from the battery wires, and also to fit noise suppression components to both motors.
Looking forward to going for a cruise now that it back working as it should.
The OEM controllers for the Yamaha G22 golf cart have the part number IC3645SH4V262Y1, but these don’t appear to be readily available in the UK. A customer asked us if we could provide a solution, so we looked to see if our Pro-160-HC could be made to work. After some investigation we obtained the matching connector for the wiring harness plug, figured out the various bits and pieces, and created a solution that was pretty straightforward to fit. We’ll have a look at making up a small circuit board that should make it even simpler.
You told us that you wanted a 50 degree potentiometer for the RBT that lasted longer than the standard one. We built ourselves a test rig and ran a load of the old design through a range of life tests to get some solid data that we could discuss with the manufacturer. To cut a long story short, the manufacturer has created a new potentiometer design with an improved track layout. We have had these running on the test rig for many 000s of operations now, and the ones we have stripped down show negligible signs of wear. Our tests to establish an exact figure will take some time to conclude but early results are very encouraging, and we are pleased to say that these are now available.
This picture shows the old [top] and new track designs.
A slightly unusual project today …. We’re working with a company developing a novel electrochemical cell for producing hydrogen and they asked if we could increase the frequency of the PWM output. It’s not something we’ve done before [we’re usually asked if we can slow it down], but we took on the challenge and found that we could. It throws up some interesting problems around the various timing loops within the software but we’ve tripled it to 60kHz fairly easily and it looks like 200kHz is on the cards.
The guys at Team Sprayers built this laboratory robot for applying water / fertiliser to plants over 20 years ago. The old RS motor controller is obsolete now so they asked us if we could re-create the control system for them. We used one of our Pro-160s set up for push button operation, wired in some limit switches, and tweaked a few settings – job done!