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Cow Power MOM (Monitoring and Operating Module). Asa Parker Geovanny Rodriguez Jase Skellie. CVPS Contacts: David Dunn Rob Nelson. Faculty Mentor: Josh Bongard. CVPS Cow Power ™. A renewable energy program that supports Vermont dairy farms

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Presentation Transcript
slide1
Cow Power MOM(Monitoring and Operating Module)

Asa Parker

Geovanny Rodriguez

Jase Skellie

CVPS Contacts:

David Dunn

Rob Nelson

Faculty Mentor:

Josh Bongard

cvps cow power
CVPS Cow Power™
  • A renewable energy program that supports Vermont dairy farms
  • On-site electricity generators run on methane from cow manure
  • Four farms produce 8 million KWh annually

(enough for about 750 homes)

  • Provides a new income stream for farmers, while reducing manure odor and water quality impacts
our project at green mountain dairy
Our Project at Green Mountain Dairy
  • Collects system data from digester and displays it in farm office (~ 750 feet away)
  • Has an alarm system that notifies someone when there is a problem with the system (cell phone call)
the original problem
The Original Problem…
  • Monitoring system = manual inspection sensors
  • Many components can shut the system down – locating the problem is difficult
  • Adjusting generator output is a manual task learned through experience
design goals
Design Goals
  • Display system data remotely
  • Gather necessary data to automate generator output adjustments
  • Create a self-diagnostic alarm system to alert someone when there is a problem
other goals the solution needs to be
Other GoalsThe solution needs to be:
  • Adaptable and expandable
  • User-friendly and appealing
  • Reliable – farmers need to trust the system
discarded design concepts
Discarded Design Concepts

Tablets

Function: system data is displayed on tablet PCs, carried by farm workers

Drawbacks: burdensome, reliability (range, battery life)

Fax

Function: system data is faxed to office at regular intervals

Drawbacks: little improvement over existing solution, no alarm

slide14
Smartphone

Function: system data is displayed on smartphone, carried by farm workers

Drawbacks: Expensive monthly access fees

Web Site

Function: system data is served to a Web site, accessible anywhere

Drawbacks: limited alarming capability, security issues

design road map
Design Road Map

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

design road map1
Design Road Map

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

design road map2
Design Road Map

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 13, 2007:

PLC & QuickPanel quote received

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

design road map3
Design Road Map

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 13, 2007:

PLC & QuickPanel quote received

February 18, 2008:

We’re going to need lots of help!

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

design road map4
Design Road Map

March 27, 2008:

Flow meters won’t work

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 13, 2007:

PLC & QuickPanel quote received

February 18, 2008:

We’re going to need lots of help!

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

design road map5
Design Road Map

March 27, 2008:

Flow meters won’t work

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 13, 2007:

PLC & QuickPanel quote received

April 4, 2008:

Watlow sensors don’t have outputs

February 18, 2008:

We’re going to need lots of help!

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

design road map6
Design Road Map

April 15, 2008:

Success!!! Proof of Concept

March 27, 2008:

Flow meters won’t work

October 25, 2007:

Final Concept

December 13, 2007:

PLC & QuickPanel quote received

April 4, 2008:

Watlow sensors don’t have outputs

February 18, 2008:

We’re going to need lots of help!

December 12, 2007:

Autodialer discovered

slide23
The “brain” of the installed system
  • All sensor outputs collected here
slide24
Sensitive to low flow rates, low pressure
  • Insertion style – least invasive, easy to install
slide25
PLC = Programmable Logic Controller
  • Robust, Industrial strength computer
slide26
Combines visualization and control (like a PC)
  • No hard drive, no moving parts = more reliable
slide27
Converts text strings to speech
  • Automatically makes phone calls
slide28
Range = 2 miles
  • Eliminated the need to bury 750 feet of cable
slide29
Noting special, just an old PC
  • Only job is to display QuickPanel screenshot
  • System is completely functional without it
what we would do next
What we would do next…
  • Fully integrate our project into the existing digester system
  • Add sensors
  • Set up a database/Web site
lessons learned
Lessons Learned
  • Don’t be afraid to change a design
  • The most simple things can turn out to be the most complicated (and vice versa)
  • Don’t expect to get help from a company unless you:
        • Give them money
        • Pretend like you’re going to buy something from them
a special thanks
A Special Thanks

Robinson Sales, INC.

The LEEN Company

Kevin Mahoney

Dave Dunn and Rob Nelson

Josh Bongard

Bill Rowell, owner of GMD

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