Industrial PC's: Reliability is crucial

GEA Grenco B.V. is market leader in several aspects of industrial refrigeration; the company can therefore boast on a variety of customers in both food and non-food processing. As part of the Refrigeration Division of the Global Engineering Alliance (GEA), Grenco develops, delivers and maintains custom designed industrial refrigeration systems, and is one of the world’s leading experts in this field. Grenco and the headquarters of the Refrigeration Division are located in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands.

The Challenge

A large company in the fishing-industry plans to use complex refrigeration systems on board of their ships, controlled by SCADA software. The systems are developed and delivered by Grenco. The computers containing the SCADA software need to be fast and reliable, but most of all solid.

The ships are not easy to reach on the high seas, in case repair is needed. Besides, during the stay at sea the refrigeration systems run 24 hours a day, and so do the computers. Therefore, a standard PC will not do the job.

The company uses both modern, high-speed control systems as well as older types, still working on a DOS platform. The hard ware of the old computers needs replacement, but reliable 486 types are no longer or hardly available. The older soft- and hardware is applied, because they control some elements of the refrigeration systems that are still in use. New ‘touch’ screens are needed to control the software. They have to be shock proof, requiring high quality and installation. Some ships demand specific checks and approvals for the entire equipment.

The Solution

Computer systems developed by Mulder- Hardenberg are famous for their rugged and very solid construction, performing 100% under very hard conditions, even on board of a plunging ship. Moreover, for a sustained period of time, M-H can deliver these computers in exactly the same version.

For older computers performing on a DOS platform, Mulder-Hardenberg has developed a standard high quality replacement for the hardware of 486-‘like’ machines.
The required shock proof mounted touch screens and specifically checked & approved equipment can be delivered and implemented by M-H.

The Implementation

The IPC systems, produced by M-H for Grenco, prove to be a perfect match for the SCADA application. Every system is built and thoroughly tested by Mulder- Hardenberg, in our own R&D department. Special attention is put into the reinforced mounting of the components and the cables. All systems had to endure a rigid 24-hour period in our ‘no mercy’ climate box, the only way to ensure trouble free performance under hard conditions. This test ensures Grenco full time performance of their very complex ‘high tech’ refrigeration systems.  

The older type computers, based on a DOS platform, were replaced by new hardware. M-H managed to implement a reliable new ‘old’ system, including the demanded and necessary OS license agreements.

The result

Besides the guarantee of flawless performance, Mulder-Hardenberg ensures a full package service. This guarantee is partly due to the fact that M-H delivered a solution for Grenco based on a version of the system that is available for a sustained period of time. The service we can assure reaches, when necessary, as far as the location. Grenco is very satisfied, as confirmed in writing.

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