Monitoring with Seven Thermographic Cameras
On peak days, significantly more than 100 vehicles deliver up to 700 tons of waste in the large storage bunker of the refuse incineration plant, in which several thousand tons of waste are stored. To ensure that this volume can be monitored efficiently and reliably around the clock at ignition sources, e.g. from glowing embers brought in externally or heating induced by the activity of microorganisms, multiple infrared cameras have been used since 2015. Originally started with five cameras, the thermal imaging early fire detection installed onsite meanwhile records a total of seven cameras, which are located in special protective housings. "Two of them are fixed mounted. The employees monitor the hoppers and shredder hole," explains Thomas Andres, operations manager of the EZF. "The remaining cameras are equipped with pan/tilt heads and are used for safeguarding the waste bunker, two storage areas and both crane parking spaces."
Some of these cameras combine an infrared camera with a visual camera as a so-called twin-system. Together with their powerful, electronically controlled pan/tilt heads they provide the possibility of optimised area monitoring. Twin systems and single cameras are divided into two separate asynchronous systems, both having their own computer software architecture. If one system fails, the other one can be further used autonomously.
The handling of the systems has been solved in a similarly flexible manner. The operation is basically fully automated. The infrared cameras and their positions can also be controlled at any time directly by hand, however. All it takes is to switch to manual control. The operating personnel are thus able to effectively neutralise the ignition sources detected below the angle of view of the camera automatically. All other functions of WASTE-SCAN remain unaffected and continue to operate to the full extent. The very latest digital interfaces secure the connection to the cameras via a network allowing for convenient remote control as well as the implementation of routine diagnostics. This can take place from multiple maintenance and operating stations. The results can then also be checked on monitors immediately.