How Leak Detection Innovations Are Saving Food Companies Money
Advancing technology is improving the food industries at a phenomenal rate. Perhaps one area that doesn’t garner enough detection is leak detection equipment. A number of innovations over the last decade have helped businesses like cafeterias and food and beverage packaging plants protect their stock and reduce their costs associated with storing it.
Computerization, Miniaturization and Integration
Leak detectors or sensors have become smaller. That’s allowed for easier integration into plumbing systems. Additionally, detectors can often feature multiple sensors and thereby combine water, helium, refrigerant and other leak detection equipment. Many of these units are now wireless, which allows for non-obtrusive integration into both the plumbing system and the computer network. Through network integration, a company no longer relies solely on the sensor. A food and beverage packaging company, for instance, can tie it into software sensors featured on terminals in its local shop.
Leak detectors have also become more sophisticated in that they feature better early-warning systems. Traditionally, a school cafeteria might have leak detection equipment that would detect gross leaks, at which point substantial loss could’ve already occurred. Today, that same establishment can have highly sensitive sensors monitoring pressure decay, pressure burst and so forth. Employing innovations in sniffer leak detection, for instance, a system cannot only detect the likeliness of a leak but isolate the probable points of origin.
Another way that detection has changed in recent years is instant notification. Such technology has been in use as far back as pagers that were small enough to wear on a belt, but the sophistication has evolved tremendously since. A large food and beverage packaging plant may have a system in place that automatically notifies the on-call mechanic via his or her smartphone. A school cafeteria, on the other hand, may rely on emailing everyone on a list or tweeting to a Twitter feed that school administration and lunchroom personnel monitor.
Finally, these advancements have made redundant plumbing more feasible in some situations. Large factories have long used redundant plumbing because it allowed production to continue while the primary lines were repaired. In smaller-scale environments, redundancy made less sense. After all, a technician would still have to come to the site, locate the leak and repair it. However, leak detectors are so advanced now that they can disable the system temporarily, isolate the leak and then use redundant plumbing to configure an alternative route until manual repairs can be made.
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