Commentary | Supply Chain Technology

Weighing In on the Latest Trends in Weighing Technology

Tags: Pharmaceutical Logistics, Logistics, Supply Chain

Bill Ambrose is Regional General Manager, SA/WA, AccuWeigh

Professionals involved in logistics, transportation, and the supply chain can attest to the weighty role that weighing technology plays and how it has evolved to help organizations achieve commercial goals and stay competitive.

Weighing systems play a critical role across the gamut of industry, providing companies with vital information that enables them to improve their yields, meet legislative requirements, enhance the safety of the working environment, and boost supply chain operations.

From high-precision laboratory balances to heavy-duty shipping container scales, the process of accurate weighing is vital and equipment manufacturers are constantly challenged to meet customer demands for innovative products that deliver on price, functionality, quality, reliability, safety, durability, and performance.

The rapidly evolving digital and telecommunications landscape is also driving innovation. Key developments have been logged in the areas of data recording and transfer, wireless operation, diagnostics, remote tracking, and security.

Latest and Greatest

Recent highlights in weighing technology development include digital load cells, the integration of interfaces for peak measurement accuracy, enhanced security through the legal traceability of scale values, improvements in equipment durability to provide maximum protection against hazardous conditions, extreme weather, and rough usage, wireless technology that enables unmanned weighing systems, and improved control systems for multiple sensor weigh-in-motion weighbridge systems.

Weighbridge design has seen key peripheral developments. Innovations such as data transfer, the ability to track productivity and performance online, automatic number plate recognition, remote displays, and the ability to interrogate load cells remotely have all changed the face of vehicle weighing, with weigh-in-motion (WIM) technology coming to the fore as a viable option.

These WIM systems are gaining traction over traditional static weighbridges and offer a number of advantages, including improved operational efficiencies, automatic calculation and analysis of key data (such as gross weight, net weight, and axle weight), faster throughputs and streamlined operation, and reduced margin for error.

They enable less dependence on operator assistance and offer instant alerts on over- or underloading of vehicles. They can be integrated with existing systems, which allows optimum allocation of resources. Additionally since drivers remain in the vehicles while using the system, the technology helps improve workplace safety.

Whether it’s a weigh-in-motion weighbridge on a remote site or a hermetically sealed, aseptic load cell for a check weigher in the pharmaceutical industry, the principles driving technological developments are the same. Supply chain professionals should seek the common denominators in weighing technology that support streamlined supply chain operations: speed, efficiency, accuracy, functionality, servicing, and support.






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