Bulk Weighing Defined
Bulk weighing refers to the process of weighing bulk material as it flows from one vessel to another. Bulk weighing systems are used to facilitate this process. These systems can be customized as needed depending on the type of material being weighed, the environment in which the weighing occurs, and even the rate of flow of the bulk material.
Where are Bulk Weighing Systems Utilized?
Bulk weighing systems are used in a wide variety of applications, throughout many different industries. Any operation that is repeatedly filling a vessel can utilize a bulk weighing system to increase efficiency and ensure quality control.
For example, imagine a coffee producer who needs to fill thousands of coffee cans with the same exact amount each day, or an aggregate supplier who needs to fill hundreds of supersacks with sand each day. Both of these companies need to minimize time wasted correcting overfilling or underfilling. In both examples, it is also imperative to ensure consistency for quality control purposes. Each can of coffee or bag of sand must contain the same amount as the one filled before it. Bulk weighing systems provide these operators with an easy, efficient method of performing their filling operations precisely and efficiently.
Automated Filling & Quality Control
Bulk weighing systems can be used in filling operations to enable automatic or semi-automatic filling of a vessel, increase efficiency, ensure consistency, and allow human laborers to be utilized for more skilled tasks. Bulk systems typically include a tank or hopper with a valve that contains the bulk material, a weight indicator, and a scale. The vessel being filled sits atop the scale.
In a bulk weighing system, the operator defines a “target weight” or “set point”. This target weight, or in some cases, target weight range, represents the desired amount of the product (in pounds) that should ultimately end up in the receiving vessel. The valve at the bottom of the tank opens to release the bulk material, which drops into the waiting vessel. As the weight of the vessel containing the material approaches the set point, the valve closes to stop the flow of bulk material.
These type of filling systems allow operators to quickly and precisely fill each vessel, without having to correct overfill or underfill in between. Automating a simple process such as filling eliminates human error, frees human hands for more skilled tasks, and helps maintain quality control by ensuring that each bag, can, or other vessel contains the same amount of product.
Bulk Fill System with Dribble Function
In this video, Kevin explains how a bulk weighing system utilizes both bulk and dribble feed mechanisms to perform a filling operation. This system seamlessly transitions from rapid bulk filling to a precise dribble feed as the vessel approaches the designated target weight, commonly referred to as the “set point.”
Bulk Weighing System with Traveling Preact
In this video, Dale from Michelli Weighing & Measurement demonstrates another type of bulk weighing system. This system incorporates the use of a “traveling preact” to fill the waiting vessel. The term “preact” refers to the residual material flow that persists once the primary material flow is halted. Dale explains how this system monitors the preact, and adjusts the timing of the shut-off signal if that preact deviates from the target weight or set point.
Could a bulk weighing system help improve your operation?
Bulk weighing systems are completely customizable. Our product specialists have worked with a wide range of industries, so they can help provide insight into specific systems used in applications similar to your own. They can even help you envision a bulk weighing system that is completely unique. The Michelli Weighing & Measurement team can also recommend the best equipment for your operation based on your environment and the bulk material being weighed.
Want to see another bulk weighing system in action? Visit our YouTube channel to watch a video highlighting a bulk weighing system used to fill supersacks with sand. How to Use a Scale to Automate Filling Operations
Interested in other functions weighing systems can perform? Read our other blog posts:
Interested in a Bulk Weighing System?
Contact your local Michelli Weighing & Measurement office today to speak with a product specialist about whether a bulk weighing system could help you increase efficiency & ensure consistency.