Fuel volume control in portable power generators

Customer: Thiess, mining services provider (Australia)
Task: fuel volume monitoring for planning machinery operation
Machinery: lighting masts with diesel engines (power gens)
Solution: DUT-E fuel level sensor + tracking device
Result: reduction of maintenance costs by 20% due to optimization of production processes

The Customer

Thiess was founded in 1933 and eventually became one of the biggest companies in Australia and Asia on construction and mineral extraction markets. Nowadays company carries out several large-scale projects in Australia, Indonesia, Botswana, Mongolia, Canada, Chili, India.
Thiess extracts various types of minerals: coal, iron and copper ore, gold, diamonds. Extraction is conducted both by ground and mine methods.
Thiess pays attention to implementation of innovative technologies that not only increase labor productivity, but also save fuel and reduce environmental burden during mining process.

12 000+ employees

1300+ million dollars of equipment cost

700+ million dollars of annual net profit

7 countries, where mining sites are situated

The Machinery

Lighting masts are designed for illumination of working sites (pits, transect, etc) with no stationary power supply. Their design features are:

  •  fuel tank of higher volume;
  • diesel generator for 24 V direct current;
  • lighting system with LED lamps.

Tracking device is mounted on the mast (equipment geolocation, transmitting data on location and fuel volume in tank).

Lighting masts

The Task

Fuel tank of higher volume

Lighting masts ensure continuous operation of mining process. Time of mast’s operation until emptying one fuel tank is about 400 hours. After that, technical support specialists are sent to refill the tank and make current technical inspection.

To plan optimal schedule for technical servicing of the machinery, it is necessary to monitor remaining fuel volume in real time and send data to dispatch service. For that purpose, fuel level sensor, which can send precise fuel volume data to tracking device, is needed.

The Solution

DUT-E 485 fuel level sensors are used for accurate fuel volume monitoring in tanks of lighting masts.

Sensors determine fuel volume in the tank with high accuracy (measuring error is 0,2%). Volumes of fuel refilling and draining are measured in real time.

Received data is sent to tracking device via RS-485 digital interface (fuel level in millimeters, fuel volume in liters, information about refilling and draining). Data from tracking device is sent to PC of dispatch service. Data on geolocation of mast, fuel volume in tank and generator operation time is available in form of reports and diagrams.

When fuel volume in tank is 10%, dispatcher decides to send technical service specialist to the lighting mast. So, refilling of fuel tank and maintenance of lighting masts occurs at the moment when it’s necessary.

Fuel volume in tank chart

Gregory Volejko, Technoton

«DUT-E fuel level sensors is reliable and accurate device for fuel volume measurement. Technoton produces a wide range of fuel level sensors with various lengths and interfaces for all kinds of vehicles and stationary tanks. Fuel level sensors with RS-485 digital interface were mounted on fuel tanks of lighting masts. These sensors are compatible with tracking devices of world’s leading manufacturers.»

The Result

DUT-E 485 fuel level sensors were mounted on 150 lighting masts for more than a year ago. Sensors are working together with tracking devices. On dispatcher’s request data on fuel volume in tank of lighting masts is sent.

All fuel level sensors are working in normal mode and with the declared accuracy. Due to rapidity in receiving information about fuel volume in tank, it became possible to optimize routes and schedule of technical service. Fuel costs and overhead costs of technical service decreased by 20%.

Apurba Paul, Thiess company

«Technoton products – optimal choice for our equipment, which is operated in harsh environment (high temperature and strong winds). We have seen high reliability and efficiency of devices. DUT-E fuel level sensors work continuously in conjunction with tracking devices, used by our company. We are going to mount more Technoton products on lighting masts and other equipment.»

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