Data streaming to keep track of planes and direct drive for cooling tower fans

Aeromechanical Services (AMS) has carried out pre-deployment testing of a communication technology that can stream data from aircraft to ground anywhere, anytime, in real time. In service evaluation with an unnamed airline will be carried out shortly. The technology comes in the wake of the Air France plane crash in June which led to industry calls for a live black box capable of Streaming critical flight information in real time. Such a system could provide immediate insights into in flight incidents and assist in rescue missions and reconstructions in the event that an aircraft’s black box cannot be recovered, as was the case in the Air France incident. In emergency mode, the Automated Flight Information Reporting System (Afirs) can trigger a streaming mode to begin transmission of essential position and flight data recorder information. AMS said that the system has been shown to provide a continuous automated link between onboard avionics, the Iridium global satellite network and a ground based web server that routes messages to any number of designated recipients, all within seconds. It represented and exciting breakthrough. This capability is not only valuable in improving response to in flight issues but, in the rare case where an aircraft is lost, this data stream can provide immediate insight into the exact flight path, location and possible cause of the accident. The use of Iridium means that there are no coverage gaps in the Afirs data streaming anywhere on the globe. A common complaint with data streaming technology is that it isn’t economically viable due to the massive bandwidth and infrastructure requirements. But AMS technology compresses flight data to use available and width fully, allowing it to send substantially more information than an aircraft sing a standard satellite system. The system has a voice capability so crews can contact ground staff, and a button that can be pressed in the event of a hijacking.

Direct drive for cooling tower fans saves energy:

Lack of moving parts in permanent magnet system boosts reliability>>

A direct drive technology for controlling cooling tower fans in commercial buildings is called to improve reliability by eliminating moving parts while also saving energy and running quietly. The technology is based in a permanent magnet motor that packs the high torque required into a compact space so that it can easily be retrofitted into cooling towers – sitting underneath the fan in the space currently required for the gearbox element of conventional power transmission systems. Air cooling towers are commonly used as part of the heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems of offices and industrial buildings. Large fans pull air over water soaked media to cool it before it is retuned the chiller unit. Such arrangements have several draw backs. The solution: the VS1 Cooling Tower Drive provides a direct slow speed drive for the fans combined with variable speed control that is optimized for the building cooling application. By eliminating the drive shaft and gearbox, the system minimizes moving parts improving reliability and power efficiency. The permanent magnet synchronous motor design uses energy efficient technology that, with the elimination of the gearbox and drive train transmission losses results in a more efficient system than conventional fixed speed designs. Additional energy savings can be gained by operating the fan at reduced speeds during non-peak load conditions. The direct drive also greatly reduces noise and eliminates the issue of cooling tower water becoming contaminated firm leaky gearboxes. The technology was trialed and compared with a conventional cooling tower fan drive system, at a university building with identical twin cooling towers with 5.5 fans. One tower was left as constructed. The other was retrofitted with the permanent magnet motor and variable speed drive. Measurements showed a decrease in input power of 13% for the direct drive arrangement when running the full load.

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