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Connected Intelligence Reference Design

Improving Efficiency at Baked Goods Plant

B+B SmartWorx - Ottawa, United States

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In order to keep up with demand for bakery goods, modern plants depend on fully automated baking processes.  For instance, before being packaged, baked goods need to be cooled to about room temperature, otherwise, without proper cooling; the product can be too tender, overly moist and prone to spoilage. All the processes such as slicing, bagging and wrapping call for careful handling due to the sensitive nature of the product—and all the processes have to be timed and coordinated to produce a superior product.

A contract manufacturer for baked goods had recently installed a new packaging line. The upgrade introduced an industrial Ethernet network to the plant and was very successful. The process engineer wanted to use this new technology to optimize the efficiency of baking ovens on the baking line. But the thermometers, level sensors, scales, and conveyer system all communicated via RS-485. None of this equipment was near its end-of-life and it represented a huge capital investment. Replacement was out of the question. The company needed a cost-effective means to link the packaging line to the Ethernet.

B+B SmartWorx provided an Ethernet serial server. Designed for industrial applications, the serial server was rugged enough to take its place on a factory floor while connecting the RS-485 ports to the new Ethernet network. Suddenly the entire line could be monitored and controlled from the factory control room, and, with the product was easy to set up and integrate into the existing system.

Baked Goods 2

The Ethernet pass-through port allowed the product to be daisy chained without purchasing additional switches. The company preserved its legacy equipment investment and increased plant floor productivity at the same time.

VlinxTM VESR321 Isolated Industrial Ethernet Serial Servers:

B+B SmartWorx products Used in this Reference Design

Isolated Industrial Ethernet Serial Server
Link to VESR321 data sheet
Picture of VESR321