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When installing a new baggage conveyor system at Victoria Airport in British Columbia, Canada, a number of features of the Drives by Nord Drive Systems for the plant engineer glidepath Of great importance: directly connected rotary encoders, efficient connection and remote monitoring of the devices, speedy correct installation and commissioning as well as reduction of variants.

Nord30219Despite modest passenger numbers, Victoria Airport is posing major challenges to the outfitters, including the founders of the new baggage handling system. Even though the volume of luggage can not be compared to major international airports, all the typical modules have to be integrated from check-in to security check through to sorting. In a relatively small space, this was not easy.

With Glidepath, the operator commissioned a plant manufacturer specializing in baggage handling, parcel sorting and freight logistics. The international Glidepath Group is headquartered in Auckland, New Zealand. One of its subsidiaries is located in Canada. The latter planned and installed the new baggage handling system at Victoria International Airport, which is used by 2500 passengers daily and almost 2 million passengers a year for domestic and other North American flights. The new facility has a capacity of 750 luggage per hour.

Concentrated technology in a small space

Nord40219"The baggage handling system consists of 85 new conveyor modules with a total length of about 250 m", summarizes Jason Williams, Project Engineer at Glidepath. "It also includes two CT scanners for integrated baggage screening. There are two feeder lines and two sorting points. Installing this system in such a small space has been a daunting task from the very beginning. We've built the maximum number of different components, four-way sorters, spiral conveyors and baggage alignment systems, plus an elevator and Glidepath's own turnouts and cornering conveyors. "

All drive tasks are from IE4 drive systems from north. Each drive unit consists of an IE4 permanent magnet synchronous motor, a decentralized integrated Frequency inverters of the "Nordac Flex"And one two-stage bevel gear, The hollow shaft gearboxes are mounted on the drive axle with a "Gripmaxx" socket. This fixation ensures a secure, easy-to-maintain connection without feather keys. The drive systems achieve excellent efficiencies even in the partial load range and at low speeds. As a result, they pay for themselves within a few years, sometimes even months, and significantly reduce the total costs over the product's service life. The drives are configured to exact Glidepath specifications - with connectors for power, communication, encoders, and sensors. They have an internal Ethernet / IP interface and are designed for easy loop-through installation.

Simply intelligently networked

Nord50219Glidepath saved a lot of time during installation and commissioning due to the connectors. The coded connections allow fast, error-free connection. Williams greatly appreciates the versatile interfaces: "We were able to connect most of our field devices directly to the frequency inverters." Thanks to the Industrial Ethernet communication link, the operator can not only monitor and control all drive axes remotely, but also the status at any time of sensors and actuators.

For Williams, this was a key selection criterion: "One very important advantage of the drive systems is that they support high-speed Ethernet. This allows a reliable continuous tracking of all luggage through the entire system. Our control system can centrally read the encoders wired to the frequency inverters. Typically, these are high-frequency I / O signals. "

Positioning as a welcome bonus

The drive systems fulfill various tasks on the baggage conveyor modules. They move the luggage at different speeds from one belt to the next. On the inclined conveyor, they also take over the exact height adjustment. In addition, the drives have an intelligent positioning control, which is used, among other things, on the sorters. The converters regulate all drives with gentle starting and braking ramps so that luggage is always moved gently.

Nord60219The positioning controller is an integrated function of the Nordac Flex converter series, which made Glidepath fully aware of the acquisition of the drives. The North engineers adopted the parameters of each application as part of their extensive after-sales service and were immediately aware that this function is the optimal solution for sorters. "We took advantage of the positioning capabilities of the drives on our four-way sorters and are extremely pleased with the result," says Williams. "A combination of an IE4 motor, a shaft encoder and a motor-mounted inverter allows us to use the drive as a highly accurate positioning system for the three different positions of the four-way sorters."

Service for a smooth process

Glidepath project engineer Williams is more than satisfied with the technical support. The Nord-Branchenmanager largely supported Glidepath through efficient standardization. "He helped us to reduce the number of different variants in the choice of gear ratios and motor sizes," Williams explains. "For this project, we now have only five different ratios and three motor sizes for a total of over 90 drives. That's a huge advantage. As a consequence, we only need one spare drive per gearbox type and engine size. "

Nord70219The good service continued during the course of the project. Williams commented: "We did not have any problems with the commissioning of the Nord products. They were best put into operation by all the components. We did the pre-commissioning alone and then had a North Engineer on site during the four-day start-up at the Victoria Airport. He was just great, technically very fit and explained to us the programming and parameter setting with the software "Nord Con" and with handheld terminals. In particular, he helped us set up the positioning, with which we had no experience. The close support was very valuable and with the installation and commissioning the service did not stop. I can reach Nord anytime by phone. From Seattle, they can also quickly send someone to the airport if we ask. "

Several months after commissioning, Williams complements his impression with a review of the longer regular operation: "We are very satisfied with the drive technology. I can not name any negative points. Everything works. We had no problems at all and did not have to exchange anything. The project went very well and testifies to the great cooperation. "

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