The Electronics Laboratory and Engineering Workshop enables the Institute to create bespoke monitoring systems, from feasibility and development through to construction and full implementation of robust systems, suitable for use in some of the most demanding industrial sectors.

The range of disciplines includes:

Vibration Monitoring – Product Performance

The Institute carries out vibration monitoring and testing to assess and prove product performance for systems supplied into sectors such as rail where management of vibration levels are essential. The techniques are transferable to other vibration issues that may need investigation and assessment.

Strain Gauging – In-service Performance

Duty monitoring and structural behaviour can be determined with strain gauges. The Institute has equipment and the capability to monitor complex structures and the specialist knowledge enabling installation in harsh environments.

Acoustic Emission – Duty and Condition Monitoring

 The use of acoustic emission for the duty monitoring of slow-moving bearings has been developed and installed on a range of operating plants. The Institute takes the equipment available and packages to work within a harsh industrial environment, this packaging is not limited to the instrumentation, but how the cabling etc is installed in a client’s facilities.

Thermal Monitoring - Optimizing Product Heat Treatment

The heat cycle employed in heating steel ingots is critical to achieving the required product quality in subsequent manufacturing processes.  Thermal audits are required to achieve optimum process conditions.  A typical process audit for steel ingots would require the fitting an array of thermocouples at different heights and depths within the ingot. The data collected from these thermal audits allow the level of disparity in reheating of the ingot to be quantified from top to bottom and from various depths within the ingot to each surface. The Institute has the capability to create the instrumentation and carry out such audits and the required changes to the process.

Audio visual - Remote Monitoring of Process

Bespoke video systems to support plant condition and performance monitoring of processes are available. Many hot processes do not allow operators to have close access to monitor and control, with the use of these video systems and dedicated analysis tools developed, it is possible for process operators to control and monitor performance.  The Institute has experience in the Installation of new systems as well as utilising pre-installed CCTV systems.

RFID (Radio Frequency Identity) - Asset Tracking

The Institute is investigating the use of Long Range RFID (Radio Frequency Identity) tags mounted on the ladles and lids in a steel production plant in conjunction with high gain antennas and readers to track the ladle fleet which will enhance management of the ladles by tracking to monitor their value in use, history and enable temperature control systems to operate at full capability. This technique is applicable to other assets found within the foundation industries, such as cranes and other mobile plant.