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Scaling Up Simplicity & Safety

Thu, 07/17/2008 - 11:47am

At its liquid products transfer site in Portland, OR, Peninsula Terminal Co.’s Transload Services Division receives tanker railcars transporting chemicals for the paper and fuel industries. The company’s customers rely upon Peninsula to help transfer chemical loads from railcars to the customers’ tanker trucks and track the amount of chemicals offloaded. To provide increased accuracy and easy documentation of all weighments, Peninsula Terminal sought a robust truck scale offering multi-faceted operation.

“When our customers drive into our train yard, their trucks need to be weighed,” says Jeff Fiederer, Peninsula Terminal general manager. “The tanker trucks also must be weighed on the way out, once the chemicals have been transferred, to ensure the vehicles do not exceed legal weight. Plus, doing these two weighments allows us to determine the net weight of the chemicals for inventory control and billing purposes.”

The company had spoken with Avery Weigh-Tronix representatives previously when discussing past weighing applications, and these prior conversations led Peninsula Terminal to contact Avery Weigh-Tronix for its current scale system need. “The truck scale system Avery Weigh-Tronix offered looked like a valuable asset to our company, one that would help attract customers—and it has,” Fiederer adds.

Mark Hudzinski, Avery Weigh-Tronix territory manager, suggested an above-ground 80- by 11-ft. truck scale paired with an AVS-5 unattended scale counsel featuring a Model 1310 indicator. The combination would afford Peninsula Terminal a simple, yet robust, weighing and documentation solution for its customers.

“Since the scale would be heavily used and installed above ground, we selected a scale with high capacity, rugged construction and guardrails for additional safety in a challenging climate,” Hudzinski says. “The Avery Weigh-Tronix scale system features patented Weigh Bar® technology for long-lasting, extremely accurate weighing, and SensorComm™ technology to help ensure uninterrupted operation.”

SensorComm improves a scale’s reliability by sending 12 digital signals from the weighbridge to the system indicator at once, with each cell transmitting a single signal. If a nicked cable or equipment malfunction obstructs one of these signals, the indicator would assume the missing reading is identical to the other 11.

“This is known as a ghost-weighing system, and while the weighments produced when a signal is obstructed may not be legal for trade, the SensorComm technology allows the vehicle to continue the weighing process. Meanwhile, the indicator’s results notify you that a service technician is needed,” explains Hudzinski. “This SensorComm technology serves as a backup system, but it also makes the equipment easier to calibrate and maintain.”

To add convenience to dependability, Peninsula Terminal uses Avery Weigh-Tronix’s AVS-5 unattended scale counsel with a 1310 indicator to provide drivers with a simple three-step weighing process. Upon approaching the scale, the driver enters the number assigned to the company and the individual truck number into the indicator. The scale then transmits the signals to the indicator, which translates the readings into a digital output and communicates the collected information via Ethernet to Peninsula Terminal’s office computers. This arrangement allows employees to monitor scale transactions in real time without having a scale attendant on duty. The 1310 indicator then prints a receipt for the driver’s records and billing requirements.

“Avery Weigh-Tronix’s system is easy to use, and it has proven very valuable,” Fiederer admits. “Plus, since the scale is reserved only for our customers, we don’t have a long line of trucks waiting hours on end to use it, like you may see at public weigh stations.”

With robust construction, reliable accuracy and simple operation, this Avery Weigh-Tronix scale system has proven to be what Fiederer calls a “great selling feature” for Peninsula Terminal’s customers. n
More information is available by contacting Peninsula Terminal at www.peninsulaterminal.com. To learn more about Avery Weigh-Tronix, visit www.wtxweb.com.
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