TheSolution in the reduction of fires on harvesters

October 13, 2022

Harvesters are essential equipment in harvesting work in crop fields, however, operating these machines can be dangerous.

Cases of fire in harvesters are not isolated situations. This occurs due to weather conditions such as drought and strong winds, besides the friction generated between the vegetation and the equipment.

There are some harvester firefighting strategies on the market. However, the solutions presented focus on extinguishing the fire after it starts.

Note that this strategy, although valid, is somewhat ineffective, since the burning, even if on a small scale, of vegetation and machinery still causes damage.

Harvester Monitoring

In order to reduce the occurrence rate of harvester fires, an agribusiness company, BP Bunge, located in the countryside of São Paulo has invested in monitoring the temperature of its machine’s rollers.

Currently, every shift, an operator measures the temperature of the rollers using an infrared temperature sensor. The AMC (asset monitoring center) controls the measurements and indicates intervention if the machine’s rollers reach a temperature of 80ºC.

Considering automating data collection, this company looked at the Solution as a way to monitor its assets remotely through wireless sensors. Thus, bringing greater reliability and safety in the use of harvesters.

Results with the Solution 

At first, BP Bunge opted to conduct a pilot test with just one harvester. To do so, 18 TcA+ DynaLoggers were installed on its rollers and wheel, nine on each side of the equipment.

In addition, the company chose to purchase a DynaGateway DUO to perform the automatic synchronization of the data collected by the sensors with the Web Platform.

The DynaGateway DUO collects data every 1h. Ergo, it contributes to increasing the assertiveness of the AMC when making decisions about possible interventions on the machine.

For this application, after the sensors were parameterized and associated to the Platform, it was possible to follow the temperature evolution levels in the harvester, as shown in the graph below.

Once the temperature measured in the equipment reaches 75°C, an A2 alert (high severity) is triggered warning managers of the asset’s condition.

Next Steps

Based on the satisfactory results obtained in the pilot application, BP Bunge decided to move forward with remote monitoring. For this, another 100 TcA+ sensors and 5 DynaGateway DUO were purchased in order to monitor 5 new harvesters.

Subsequently, the project’s objective is to monitor the 177 harvesters that make up the company’s current fleet.

The months of August through October have the highest incidence in the number of crop fires in the Southeast of Brazil. Therefore, the idea is to observe the performance of the Solution during this period.

Keep up with the development of this case through our blog.

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