Friday, 4 November 2005 - 12:30 PM

Improving the Operations and Efficiency of Processing ,Transport and Storage of Heat Sensitive Materials Using a Nouvo Wireless Remote Monitoring and Control System

Gideon Zeidler, animal science/cooperative extension, university of california, 138 highlander hall, riverside, CA 92521

A new system, which improves the performance and efficiency of, heat sensitive materials processing, distribution and storage operations was developed, tested and installed in commercial entities. The wireless remote monitoring and control system was developed by E-Control Systems, Chatsworth, Ca. and the University of California, Riverside, California. The System which is now in its fifth developmental generation was initially designed to prevent food spoilage and later was expanded to elevate food safety and food security performance and to protect heat sensitive non-food products such blood bank refrigerated medicines and chemicals as well. Improving the world recognized food safety system (HACCP) performance was done by transforming it from reactive into proactive system, thus preventing potential failures. As most HACCP failures are equipment, human error or act of god related, the system monitor processing and storage parameters as well as equipment operations parameters, potential human errors such as door ajar or act of god such as electricity shut down. As a result, a full-scale on-line, wireless preventive and routine maintenances were incorporated into the system. Furthermore, in order to shorten the time span from a warning is issued and the correction of the problem another system was developed which in responding to warning is automatically checking the whole system, define the problem, analyze it and issue detailed repair order. Following the satisfactory completion of the repair it is automatically checked and record is issued and added in the maintenance records where cost, frequency of repairs and inventories are monitored. The remote monitoring system is composed from hardware and software. The hardware includes several types of smart controllers, which are connected to the serial ports of each production or accessory equipment. They retrieve the processing and equipment operational data and transmit them into a central interface unit located near a computer. The data from all parts of the facility are then transmitted into the computer where a specific software process into the various reports, and send them in or outside the facility as needed. When specifications are exceeded a warning or alarm are issued and the problem is corrected in minimal time. This makes HACCP which includes preventive and routine maintenance and the fast problem correction systems fully automated, eliminating the extensive labor associated with current HACCP and the guesswork and errors associated with maintenance work. The wireless capability of the system enables the integration of all aspects of the operation such as processing transportation and storage under one monitoring system, with global capabilities to connect remote facilities. Automatic global production control and product movement also became a viable option. The two ways communication of the system enable headquarters, computers and equipment repair services to access the facility system for support, supervision or instant data collecting. The new monitoring system is currently used in hospitals, mass feeding operations, school lunch programs, correctional institutions, fast food chains, several refrigeration main and institutional kitchen manufacturers and others.

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