Prototyping - Kiwirail
Challenge: To find a simple method of transporting 50 metre pre-assembled track sections into a tunnel for a track replacemnet programme.
Solution: A joint project between Kiwirail and EB's to move 50 metre sections of built up new track weighing 40 tonne into a tunnel for track replacement on custom designed loadskates.
Automation - Kiwirail
Challenge: Design a system to pneumatically open and close carriages’ internal/vestibule doors using the air supplied by the train engine – satisfying the following requirements:
1. To sense the approach of people and automatically open the doors.
2. To close the doors after a timed duration.
3. Collision detection to prevent doors closing if blocked by an obstacle.
4. To open on low air.
5. To include a manual pneumatic override control.
6. To fit within the confined ceiling space above the vestibule.
7. To be removable through the carriage’s ceiling manhole.
Solution: EB’s designed a prototype system for testing and installed it in a carriage mock-up to ensure each of the design requirements were met precisely. Reliability testing was carried out in order to establish the unit’s service requirements and estimated life expectancy. Once satisfied that the unit would work exactly as required, EB’s drew up installation, operation and maintenance manuals for the customer. This resulted in a satisfied customer and an innovative solution to their needs.
Conveying - Superior Minerals
Client: Superior Minerals
Challenge: The existing conveyor was taking too long to load trucks – make it work faster.
Solution: EB’s carried out research on a variety of heavy-duty belting options suitable for carrying the product up a 35° incline at the desired rate of 2.5 tonnes per hour.
After sourcing a suitable belt, EB’s designed, fabricated and installed a new 10.5m belt conveyor capable of delivering the product at the desired rate. The new conveyor transports a variety of products and Superior Minerals have been pleased to see the unit meeting specifications and surpassing expectations.
Automation - NZ Brush
Client: NZ Brush Company
Challenge: Convert existing brush-making machinery to a computer-controlled system.
Solution: The NZ Brush Company was limited in expanding their brush range, as the old brush-making machinery required new cams for each new model of brush. The cams were expensive to manufacture and had a long lead time.
There were several options to reduce cost and speed up turnaround time from design to production, including replacing the old equipment with a completely new computer-controlled machine. However, the cost for this proved prohibitive. EB’s then investigated the possibility of converting the existing cam-operated machinery to a computer-controlled system. After initial research revealed that this was possible, EB’s discussed the option with NZ Brush, who requested a budget.
NZ Brush accepted the budget, allowing EB’s to move to the design stage, which was carried for approval and final costing. Manufacture of components went smoothly and once all the parts were completed, EB’s and NZ Brush agreed on a time to take the machine off-line in order to install the new parts.
The upgraded machine was commissioned and signed off on-time and on-budget, with training given to operators and on-going support.