The Covid-19 outbreak has now been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation. There are now over 200,000 confirmed cases and that number is increasing daily. With governments around the world implementing strict measures to minimize transmission of the disease, even the most optimistic people fear that we are heading towards a global recession.
China, without a doubt, is Australia’s largest trading partner. In the fiscal year 2017-18, the trade between these two counties was worth almost $200 billion. And a slowdown in international trade between Australia and China has the potential to impact significantly on trade and sales for many export-dependent enterprises.
Many Australian companies have already been caught in the fallout from the coronavirus outbreak, and manufacturing shutdowns across China have hit the supply chains globally.
The Australian mining sector is expected to experience a significant and direct impact from COVID-19. As manufacturing and construction in China have stalled, Australia’s multi-billion-dollar mining industry has started has already seen the impacts of recent weeks.
Commodity prices, particularly for crude oil, iron ore, copper and other industrial products, have all fallen on the back of reduced economic activity in China and challenging global trade conditions generally.
The global restrictions to encourage social distancing due to coronavirus have meant that some mining projects have either slowed down or stopped altogether.
Machinery and equipment manufacturers, especially mining and industrial machinery manufacturing firms, are directly exposed to changes in demand from the mining sector. The decrease in manufacturing and construction activity in China has weakened the demand for minerals such as iron.
The chances are high that the demand for steel can also be disrupted due to no manufacturing activity or closure of Chinese smelters. Either of these factors is most likely to reduce demand for iron ore and black coal significantly, presenting a significant threat to Australian miners.
On the other hand, we can see the reverse effect in the precious metals sector. These producers are likely to benefit from COVID-19 fears. It might surprise you, but many investors are shifting towards safe assets like gold, silver, and palladium. The price of gold reached a seven-year high of $2558.53 per ounce in the second week of March.
As for Trakblaze, it is business as usual and our plan is to push on and continue to support our customers as best as we can across the Mining & Rail sectors and look forward to providing continued weighing and balancing solutions for both new and existing customers.
Technological developments are creating significant improvements in the utility of weighing systems. While the basic technology of weighing itself hasn’t changed much, innovations which link weighing systems with other technology are creating a wealth of new opportunities for businesses to improve their efficiency, compliance and profitability.
In an increasingly interlinked world, where goods transport is critical, weighing systems are an essential part of the supply chain. However, these new technological innovations mean that manufacturers and processors, transport and logistics companies, traders, and receivers – as well as regulators – can increasingly get access to better quality, almost instantaneous information and even link it back through the supply chain to point of production, even potentially identifying specific vehicles that have transported the product.
What it all boils down to is that customers expect these innovations to deliver improved profits, better compliance with regulatory requirements, safety and operational efficiencies.
Some of the most important innovations have been those that allow the easy and automatic capture of real time data which can be made accessible to a wide range of users, locally or remotely, as it is collected. This integration of IT systems with weighing systems facilitates informed decision-making as it’s required, rather than having to rely on investigating a non-compliance or incident in order to improve the way things are done.
Systems integration also enables companies to continuously, reliably and remotely track productivity and performance, whether it’s in mining, agriculture, waste collection, goods transport or any of a wide range of applications. Margin for error is significantly reduced, particularly human error. Transport resources can be optimally allocated and key compliance and performance measures, such as gross and net tares and individual axle weights can be monitored constantly.
The ability to link weighbridge data with individual vehicles using unique identification systems, whether it’s Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) or \ adds yet another element of sophistication to improve the ways in which weight data is captured, communicated and used for real time analysis and decision-making.
Ultimately, companies and organisations that need to capture weight are doing it for a reason. Accurate load measurement, streamlined data capture and minimising error are all essential to keep the supply chain moving efficiently and effectively. And purchasers of weighing systems expect an innovative technological solution that is fast, efficient, accurate, functional, affordable and contributes to their performance on profit, safety and compliance.
The weighing system is the heart of the business, and having an accurate and reliable weigh scale is vital to the success of your business. The most important thing that you have to consider when buying the weighing system is the quality of the scale.
However, even with a high-quality scale, other few factors affect the accuracy of your weighing system. To ensure your weighing system is performing accurately, you should choose components that suit your application and take steps to control the environmental and other forces.
Four factors highly affect the accuracy of your weighing system. Being aware of these factors will help you take action when your truck weighing system is not giving accurate results.
Here are the factors that can affect the accuracy of your weighing system:
Load Cell Accuracy
The load cell (also called a load sensor or transducer) is the major weighing component that bends with the load’s mechanical force and converts the mechanical force into an electrical signal.
The load cell is the major component of any weighing system. The malfunctioning of the load cell will result in inaccurate weight readings.
Some of the elements that you should be familiar with to understand how load cell functions are response time, nonlinearity, creep, hysteresis, and temperature.
Response time refers to the time it takes for a load cell to settle and provide the correct reading.
Nonlinearity is the maximum difference of a load cell’s calibration curve from a straight line.
Creep is the change in load cell output overtime when a load remains on the cell for a long time.
The change in temperature also leads to inaccuracy of weight. As the temperature rises, the wire resistance also rises, causing the voltage to drop, which leads to the scale controller displaying the incorrect result.
Another factor that causes inaccuracy in the weighing system is the load itself and the way it is applied and supported. An improperly applied load, such as twisting load, may result in inaccurate weight.
All the load weight must be supported by the load cell. When the load is resting on check-rods, bumpers, or other stabilizing elements, the output can change.
Ensuring drivers go slowly to prevent the sudden change in load, ensuring the mounting hardware is appropriately functioning are a few things you can check on when analysing the load factors.
The environmental factors like wind loading, shock loading, vibration, large temperature changes, and pressure differentials are likely to produce errors in the load cell signal.
Wind Loading: Weighing systems can sometimes be affected by air movement created by air conditioners or air ducts.
Shock Loading: Adding heavy materials suddenly on the weighing system can damage the system and the load cells.
Vibration: Vibrations from nearby equipment can be interpreted by load cells as additional force and provide inaccurate output.
Unclean Scale: The weighing scale may receive pressure from the dust or build up under the scale. To avoid this, the scale must be clean.
Leveraging and optimizing the supply chain is integral to the success of many businesses. Proper supply chain management helps companies to eliminate excess costs and deliver products to the consumer faster. And it can be done by keeping tighter control of internal inventories, production, distribution, and sales.
Over the years, automated weighbridges have contributed significantly to improved supply chain management. Technological innovations and equipment such as sensors, processors, and output displays provide greater accuracy, automation, repeatability, and speed.
And with weighbridge software, it has become much easier to manage data and accounting. Newer software developments mean that weighbridge systems can be integrated into the company’s own internal software systems and provide more information to relevant parties and customers.
Weighbridge automation guarantees secured weighing and real-time reporting, and can be customised as required. Here are some of the benefits of automated weighbridges and how they contribute to revolutionising the supply chain.
Secure and reliable – Now, weighing can be done under CCTV surveillance with continuous photo/video capturing of vehicle and platform while recording weight. You don’t have to keep worrying and checking the weighing process.
Anti-theft Security Checks – Technology can help to eliminate fraud and theft. The anti-theft security check restricts human errors like fake weighing, double weighing of the same vehicle, manipulation in vehicle positioning, zero error, and verifies vehicle identity. Your entire weighing process will be more safe and accurate.
Operator-less and fast Weighing – With automated weighbridges, you can save labor cost as there is no need for an operator. Weighing is done through RFID (Radio Frequency Identification). By eliminating human interaction, it makes the weighing process faster.
Data Management – Weighbridges are equipped with data management software, which makes it easier to control and report the data. All the data is electronically stored and backed up so that you can easily access it when required. Furthermore, it also speeds the weighing process by reducing the documentation and formalities.
Volumetric Real-time monitoring – The weighing process can be monitored in real-time through the dashboard without being present in the weighing spot. You will get live details of the weighing process and can monitor each transaction.
Reporting – Report generation is also easier with an automated weighing system; virtually any reports can be drawn based on the information required, and delivered via e-mail.
Weighbridge truck scales are a valuable asset for all industries, They deliver a wide range of benefits, not limited to the supply chain. However, there are various types of weighbridge truck scales and software available. To get maximum benefits (better return on investment), it is essential to partner with an experienced weighbridge supplier who can ensure the weighbridge matches your requirements for both short and long-term.
If you’re interested in improving your company’s supply chain by increasing productivity, reducing costs, improving safety and efficiencies, have a chat with one of Australia’s largest weighbridge manufacturers, Trakblaze. They’ll understand your needs and help you to choose the best weighbridge solution for your unique operational needs. Take advantage of their years of experience by contacting or by visiting their website, https://trakblaze.com/