EUROPE – Ishida Europe has unveiled a new technology including an internal moisture sensor and monitoring system that controls and prevent water entering production equipment when weighing fresh and frozen food.

The technology together with Ishida’s advanced Sentinel monitoring and reporting system will allow producers achieve both high performance and longer term reliability while protecting their critical equipment from moisture damage.

“Our multihead weighers are renowned for their reliability and efficiency, but the downside to this is that the machines can still continue to operate for a long time even in harsh environments where their levels of protection have been compromised,” said Ian Atkinson, Ishida Europe’s Business Manager EMEA – Multihead Weighers.

In a bid to control water ingress, a common problem in fresh and frozen weighing and packing, developers have put in place appropriate IP ratings and waterproof wash-down designs but these are said to be unable to prevent incidents such as doors and drive weigh units being loosely torqued, or doors being inadvertently left open.

High moisture ingress, sometimes coupled with high humidity in a multi-head weigher may cause downtime and unnecessary repairs as a result of loss of machine performance and damage.

In the new technology, the weighing equipment is incorporated with three dew and temperatures sensors that monitors humidity within the weigher and signals operators at different levels of humidity.

At 80-90%, humidity levels create a red alert and as a result, the weigher’s Remote Control Unit’s power being automatically switched off, which then requires humidity clearance to as low as 80% for it to continue the operation.

Humidity of more than 90% is past the critical level triggering a bespoke input/output module, an alarm or beacon warning lights.

Ishida launched the Sentinel Reporting, Intervention and Service packs that combine immediate alerts to water ingress problems with an in-depth historic analysis of each issue as and when it occurred.

It allows production line equipment such as checkweighers, multihead weighers, tray sealers, graders and bagmakers can all be connected to a central system manned by Ishida engineers.

The new monitoring system with moisture sensors complements this system in the long run ensure the weigher can maintain a longer productive life.

“The availability of our moisture sensors, together with the real time reporting capabilities of Sentinel, eliminates this problem so that the weighers are able deliver their highest speeds and accuracy unimpeded, and in this way maintain constant high production throughput and efficiencies,” he added.