Here’s a throwback from six years ago today, when MadgeTech engineers and staff installed several data loggers in a car destined for destruction. MadgeTech was proud to sponsor a Demolition Derby car for the 2013 Hopkinton State Fair, driven by then 20-year-old, Roddy Tanner, of Warner.
Installed in Roddy’s blue Ford LTD were an UltraShock-50G, two TSR101-50G shock loggers for monitoring the G forces of the crashes, three TC101As for monitoring the temperature of the engine block, radiator and transmission and a Pulse101A for monitoring the engine RPMs. The loggers were secured to various positions within the vehicle using industrial strength high powered magnets. There’s no need to worry about the shock loggers themselves, their steel enclosures are built to be virtually indestructible.
Since then, MadgeTech has released the new UltraShock, available for preorder now, which replaces all of our older shock models. The UltraShock contains powerful improvements and an all-in-one functionality capable of recording shock, temperature, pressure and humidity. Featuring a smaller, lighter design, the UltraShock has a battery life of up to 90 days and uses a USB-C cable, making it easily rechargeable.
If you would like more information on the new UltraShock, please email MadgeTech at [email protected] or give us a call at (603)-456-2011.
It was August of 2003, it was hot, people were enjoying their air-conditioned homes trying to beat the heat, when suddenly, the power went out. The outage lasted for two days, making it the largest blackout in human history. Over 50 million people were affected spanning from Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Michigan and even parts of Ontario.
While most power failures last only a few hours, some blackouts can last days or even weeks, completely shutting down production at companies and critical infrastructures.
A loss in refrigeration or climate control can lead to hundreds of thousands of dollars in product waste that can no longer be guaranteed safe for consumption. Food bacteria grows most rapidly at temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F, doubling in as little as 20 minutes. According to the USDA, refrigerators keep food safe for up to 4 hours, while freezers can hold a safe temperature for up to 48 hours when full. For some dairy companies, a brief loss of power could result in the plant shutting down for up to 12 hours to clean and re-sterilize equipment.
For medical institutions, monitoring temperature amidst a failing power grid is extremely important. If power fails, many medications and lifesaving vaccines that must be stored at certain temperatures will quickly expire without the proper temperature control. The CDC warns that medications stored in the refrigerator should be thrown out in the event of a power outage that lasts for a day or more. Healthcare organizations face average costs of $690,000 per outage, according to a Ponemon Institute/ Emerson Network Power report. Add in the potential of lost life and that cost is immeasurable.
According to Microgrid Knowledge, E Energy consultant E Source found eight key U.S. market segments forfeit about $27 billion per year due to power outages. The E Source report found that manufacturers tend to suffer the most from long outages. Manufacturing industry also faces significant losses during short outages and power quality disturbances. If a car manufacturer produces 1,200 cars per day worth $50,000 each, that means one day of lost production is equivalent to about $60 million.
Our aging power infrastructure, combined with a growing population, and more frequent and extreme weather, means that more major blackouts or brownouts are inevitable. The best thing business owners and operators can do to prevent loss in these situations is prepare.
For more information about which data loggers can help you protect and monitor your business, industry, products, or services, visit us on the web at madgetech.com or call us at (603) 456-2011.
Behind every great business or laboratory, there’s at least one great facilities engineer. Facility engineers are responsible for the overall functionality and operation of the buildings at which they work and the complex systems within them including electricity and HVAC.
If that sounds like a lot of responsibility, it is! Here are just a few of the toughest challenges that define the facilities engineering profession:
Creating a Safe Environment
When it comes to facilities engineering, the old expression “safety first” holds true. Facilities engineers are responsible for ensuring all Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards are upheld at their workplace in addition to other state and local safety requirements. Engineers are often also expected to teach that information forward to colleagues to ensure a consistent, facility-wide knowledge base.
Guiding safety in the workplace means that facilities engineers also regularly check all equipment and systems throughout the building to verify that they are operating as intended. Flaws or malfunctions in electrical, HVAC or mechanical equipment can all lead to significant human injury or death, so a good facilities engineer never uses the “eyeball test” to monitor his or her workplace. Instead, facilities engineers must establish a monitoring schedule and verification protocol to ensure worker safety at all times.
Maintaining an Energy Efficient Facility
If safety is the facilities manager’s greatest moral obligation, then maintaining efficiency is his or her greatest economic obligation. In the manufacturing, laboratory and cold storage industries, energy use can be one of the steepest costs of operation. One of a facilities engineer’s key responsibilities is to ensure that building energy use is optimized in every way possible.
Whether checking an HVAC system for leaks, measuring voltage drawn by equipment or auditing points of building heat loss, facilities engineers are tasked with keeping their workplace efficient in every way possible to maintain profitability and lower overhead. This requires facilities engineers to have a wide, general knowledge of electrical engineering and energy auditing. They must be aware of not just the facility’s energy needs, but those of each individual division, room or piece of equipment. This knowledge, combined with regular audits and validation protocols, provides engineers with the best chance to eliminate inefficiencies.
Supporting Regulatory Compliance
While regulatory paperwork and documentation are often handled by a compliance engineer, ensuring that equipment operates in a manner that maintains a compliant environment often falls to facilities engineers. If a cooling system is malfunctioning, for example, it’s impossible for a meat packing facility to process meat in a compliant manner. If a hospital has malfunctioning electrical outlets, it will be extremely challenging to store vaccines at regulation temperatures or sterilize tools as required.
This means that a strong facilities engineer must have an understanding of the regulatory requirements that his or her employer is beholden to and also be equipped with the proper measurement and testing tools to validate that regulatory conditions are being met. Regulations can actual be beneficial to a facilities engineer or manager when developing an action plan because they establish benchmarks for how various systems throughout a facility ought to operate. These let the engineer know exactly what his or her goals for maintaining systems operation look like.
By protecting their co-workers, fostering a culture of efficiency and ensuring their workplaces uphold federal regulations, facilities managers earn their keep as the unsung heroes of the industrial world.