The Problem

NquiringMinds have been working with SEAB Energy to develop a simplified process for developing custom logic for processing data collected from SEAB’s Muckbuster anaerobic digesters. The waste materials can be used for energy production and sensors were needed along with advanced sensor technology to collect information on the process and ensure optimal conditions for anaerobic breakdown.  By utilising nquiringminds IoT technology and sensors it has become possible to easily create complex logic flows to deal with adding intelligence to biogas sensors, chlorine sensors and smart waste disposal units

IOT Integration

  • Temperature sensors
  • Fluid level sensors
  • Pressure sensors
  • Valve controls
  • nquiringminds QBrix sensors
  • nquiringminds Nquire Toolbox
  • nquiringminds TDX (Trusted Data Exchange)

Scenario

SEAB develops anaerobic digestion machines, which convert waste material into energy. Bacteria convert the waste into methane in a highly controlled environment. The methane is burned to create heat and this heat is in turn converted into electricity.

The process is complex, involving many stages. The environment of each step needs careful monitoring and the various actuators (valves and the switches) must be precision controlled in real-time. nquiringminds’ technology has been effectively integrated with the digestion machines leading to several key benefits:

  • The open source IOT interface means it is very easy and very quick to integrate a pre-existing complex sensor suite into a common IOT messaging framework.
  • The drag and drop environment for process creation means complex industrial flow processes can be developed very quickly (hours instead of weeks).
  • The end to end security properties of the QBrixs technology mean the operator can have complete confidence in the underlying data and the safety and protection of their asset – in this case the industrial flow process algorithm.

The nomadic, edge processing capabilities mean that critical control logic can be seamlessly moved between the cloud and the local machinery, which can be useful from an efficiency, resilience and security perspective

 

Outcome

Leveraging nquiringminds’ central hub and dashboard architecture to manage and collect information from sensors in SEAB’s devices to interface to a PLC via ethernet.  For example easy automation of pH adjustments to the feedstock conditions during input to a Muckbuster unit – The ability to do this rapidly is incredibly important as conditions can vary quickly with environmental factors and the material input into the unit. nquiringminds are pleased with the result of the collaboration with SEAB, the project has clearly showcased the flexibility of the IOT framework and the benefits of a true open source approach to IOT applications

 

 

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