Application of intelligent crane control system in steel industry

The basic purpose of the intelligent crane control system is to realize the fully automatic operation of cranes and other equipment and improve the level of warehouse logistics information. The ultimate goal is to achieve less manned warehouse management, unmanned equipment operation, and efficient production processes. It has been successfully applied to hot rolling, cold rolling, thick plates, grinding roll rooms, blast furnace slag, scrap steel and other scenarios.


unmanned crane control


1. Necessity of applying crane control system


In an environment of shrinking foreign market demand and fierce competition in the internal market, as the ageing of the population continues to intensify, the total labour supply decreases year by year, and the demographic dividend fades, causing labour costs to increase year by year. Iron and steel enterprises have high work intensity and poor working environment. Long-term repetitive production operations are prone to fatigue and low efficiency. The production line processing rate is insufficient, which can easily cause major safety hazards to personnel and equipment, and increase overall energy consumption and production costs.


2. System design


With the basic purpose of realizing the fully automatic operation of cranes and other equipment and improving the informatization level of warehouse logistics, and with the ultimate goal of achieving less-manned warehouse management, unmanned equipment operation, and efficient production processes, integrated information technology, wireless communications technology, automatic control technology, and research and development of intelligent unmanned overhead crane systems. The system has a wide range of application areas and a complex functional structure. Accordingly, the principles of unified scheduling management and multi-device collaboration are adopted to design the overall solution. In addition to being safe and efficient, the intelligent unmanned overhead crane system also has flexible processing capabilities in complex environments. The control adopts the principle of combining automatic, manual, maintenance and remote control to achieve control diversification.


3. System structure and functions


The intelligent unmanned crane system adopts modular programming, and the system is divided into a planning layer, task layer, command layer, execution layer and basic layer. The planning layer corresponds to the intelligent dispatch system (CIDS), the task layer corresponds to the crane management and control system (CMCS), the command layer corresponds to the unmanned crane control system (UCCS), the crane micro-swing control system (MSCS) and the vehicle automatic identification system ( SRS), the execution layer corresponds to transmission equipment such as motors, and the base layer corresponds to field equipment such as field sensors.

Relying on industrial Ethernet technology and wireless communication technology to realize the serial connection of CIDS, CMCS, UCCS, MSCS, and SRS data streams, through interactive two-way data stream real-time communication, the crane control automation is realized, the warehouse management is precise, and the logistics process is intelligent.

Specific functional modules include automatic management of the warehouse area, multi-vehicle collaborative operation, material tracking, warehouse management, appointment calculation, crane allocation, work order management, work order decomposition, automatic material preparation, automatic online, automatic offline, automatic delivery, automatic Warehousing, real-time control, address conversion, precise positioning, full-process visualization, swing angle control and other functions.


4. System network


According to the process characteristics of the steel enterprise’s smart factory, an efficient and intelligent control scheme that is consistent with the actual production is used for control and comprehensive monitoring. The planning layer uses Ethernet communication to obtain planning information from the three-level system, and CIDS is responsible for the management and distribution of planning tasks. The task layer receives the work order plan from the planning layer and sends it to the corresponding overhead crane UCCS via CMCS for real-time control. The execution layer UCCS is mainly controlled by the logic controller, receives the tasks specified by the task layer, combines the sensor status, and makes through the program chain and logical judgment Issue-specific action commands to transmission equipment. System information can be monitored and manually intervened by a PC in the central control room or by a handheld terminal. The entire system network makes full use of wireless technology and industrial Ethernet technology to build the network.


5. Crane control system application


Unmanned crane control system technology has a wide range of application scenarios. It has been widely used in hot rolling, cold rolling, thick plates, grinding roll rooms, blast furnace slag, scrap steel and other steel product warehouses and finished product warehouses. It is suitable for hot-rolled steel coils, cold-rolled steel coils, slabs, rolls, and slag. , scrap steel, and other materials, as well as warehouse management and material lifting. Specific application scenarios include:

The various production line warehouse areas with plates as the main products include hot-rolled finished product warehouses, cold-rolled raw material warehouses, cold-rolled post-rolling warehouses, continuous-return finished product warehouses and galvanized finished product warehouses. It can realize services such as automatic on-line and automatic off-line of steel coils, automatic warehouse transfer, automatic unloading, automatic loading, direct loading and multi-vehicle collaborative operation.

A slag pit using blast furnace slag as the grabbing material. It can fundamentally solve the impact of water vapour, dust and other external environments on material grabbing, and greatly improve the equipment life and safe operation coefficient of the crane.

A storage area for scrap steel spans, bars, wires and finished steel products with an electromagnetic crane as the main lifting device. It can realize automatic offline, automatic warehouse reversing, automatic loading, multi-vehicle collaborative operation, electromagnetic crane control and other services. It can achieve regular stacking positions, accurate product information tracking, reduced material loading and delivery errors and eliminated goods returning accidents.


6. Advantages and effects


The application of the intelligent crane control system effectively solves the problem of crane workers’ long-term climbing on the crane, which means that crane workers are exposed to lifting heavy objects for a long time. It greatly improves the high-risk and high-intensity working conditions and can optimize the allocation of human resources by 50%. above. The utilization efficiency of the crane has been significantly improved, and the automatic operation rate of the crane has reached more than 98%. The unmanned overhead crane moves smoothly and quickly, increasing delivery capacity by 17%, reducing steel roll storage, outbound information reprocessing and inventory time, truck freight parking time by 20%, and equipment failure rate by 12%, completely preventing damage caused by material lifting. Logistics management has become more concise. Traditional processes such as manual inventory, on-site search of shipped materials, and number copying of shipped materials have been eliminated, and the entire process of materials has been tracked and visualized. Breaking through the real-time communication barriers between production and logistics, realizing real-time interaction of information, greatly improving the overall logistics rhythm. Standardize the lifting process and logistics process. It improves the safety of operations and achieves avoidance of dangerous areas, avoidance of overhead cranes, overhead crane safety interlocking, and information data security protection.


Source of article: Li Zhiliang, Li Shufeng – Application of intelligent unmanned overhead crane system in the steel industry

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