Automation solution for coke oven batteries involves the whole complex of coal charging cars, pusher cars, door machines, and electric locos with reciprocal interlocking mechanisms.
The system ensures accurate guidance and precise positioning of coke oven machines. Guidance can be performed by a human operator (semi-automatically) or automatically. For coal charging cars, automatic positioning is also available for a particular row of coal tower bunkers.
SYSTEM STRUCTURE & FUNCTIONS
All coke oven machines (coal charging cars, pusher cars, door machine, and electric locos) can operate in three modes:
fully automated mode;
The coke battery is equipped with a PLC that automatically triggers the work with a particular oven. The signal is transmitted to the PLCs installed on each of the machines. The application runs on PLCs S7 300 produced by Siemens. Having received the command from the controller, the machine travels to the targeted oven and performs the necessary operations.
The drives that move coal charging cars, pusher cars, and door machines are controlled by SINAMICS frequency converters manufactured by Siemens. This ensures smooth acceleration and stopping. Absolute rotary encoders, in particular, help to position the machine in relation to the targeted oven with maximum precision.
Mounted on the electric drives of the door extractor locking pins, encoders control the turning angle of the pusher car and the door machine and ensure reciprocal interlocking of the upper and lower pins.
Frequency converters control the drives of the coke pushing ram and the leveling bar of the coke pusher. This helps to control the speed on different stages of coke cake pushing and coke leveling.
All these operations are supervised by a human operator who can stop the automatic mode at any time and switch it to semi-automated or manual mode. Uninterruptable control over the machines is supported by video observation systems. The received footage is displayed on the monitor and can be also recorded for further analysis.
Semi-automated mode and manual operation are managed with the help of graphic operator terminal and central control unit respectively.
Semi-automated mode relies on entering the required parameters on the operator’s panel. The whole industrial process can be observed and managed on the screen of the operator’s panel. Buttons below the screen help you switch between different windows.
In the semi-automated mode the human operator chooses the screen with the necessary operation (e.g. move to a particular oven) and gives a relevant command. Due to severe operating conditions, there is a possibility of programmable simulation of actuators. In case of failure of some of the actuators, the human operator can simulate its work and continue the current operation in the automatic (depending on the sensor) or manual mode until the next routine break or actuator replacement.
In the manual mode all the mechanisms are operated according to the same algorithm. The operation starts when the corresponding button is pressed on the control panel or when the joystick controller is moved. The operation stops when the limit switch kicks in or when the button “Stop” is pushed. The coordination controller in the control room of the battery schedules the movement of coke oven machines and manages their reciprocal interlocking. The coordinating controller communicates with the PLCs installed in the machines using the protocol Industrial Ethernet wirelessly.