BHP upgrade to Bolt-on transducers for mainline weighing


BHP upgrade to Bolt-on transducers for mainline weighing

Since 2005, industrial weighing specialist Meridian Engineers has supplied eight of what it describes as its ‘Rolls Royce’ high speed weighbridges (HSWB) to the iron ore industry. These weighbridges have eight weighing points and they can weigh a train in motion at up to 80 kph. According to Dr Anthony Pruiti, managing director of Meridian Engineers, they can readily achieve NMI Class 0.5 total train weighing and NMI Class 2 individual wagon weighing between 20 and 80 kph.

The first systems were built in the Meridian workshop with strain gauges bonded directly to the rail. These HSWBs have proven to be reliable and long lasting, however when a strain gauge fails through a lightning strike, repair work in the field is tedious and time consuming. The old gauge needs to be removed. A new one needs to be bonded to the rail and all this takes place 200mm above ground level.

When BHP Billiton Iron Ore (BHPBIO) ordered two new high speed weighbridges for its Mooka Staging Facility under the Port
Hedland Inner Harbour Project, Meridian was keen to promote bolt on load cells.

Replacing damaged load cells becomes quick and efficient. The design was accepted by the client. One HSWB was located on the East track and one on the West track.

The HSWBs were placed into service at the start of June 2015. With over 250 million tonnes per annum of iron ore now being railed by BHPBIO, the weighbridges are called on to weigh thousands of wagons every day. To protect this major investment in infrastructure assets, it is extremely important these weighbridges are highly dependable and accurate at main line train speeds.

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