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WIRELESS DATA ACQUISITION SYSTEM FOR ATMOSPHERES EXPLOSIBLES (ATEX) APPLICATION

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000189550D
Publication Date: 2009-Nov-12
Document File: 3 page(s) / 55K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

The present invention relates to remote monitoring of equipment and machinery by means of a wireless data acquisition system for use in ATEX hazardous environments. The data acquisition system according to the present invention is compliant to use in hazardous environments. Additionally, since the system is wireless, the signal disturbance and other complexity related to software and hardware components of a hardwired data acquisition system are totally eliminated.

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WIRELESS DATA ACQUISITION SYSTEM FOR ATMOSPHERES EXPLOSIBLES (ATEX) APPLICATION

BACKGROUND

The present invention relates generally to remote monitoring of machinery and equipment in hazardous environments, and more particularly, to a wireless data acquisition system for Atmospheres Explosibles (ATEX) applications.

In industrial applications like oil and gas exploration, or coal mining operations, typically there is a lot of equipment and machinery involved. It is extremely hazardous for humans to operate in such environments. Therefore, to minimize risk, machinery and equipment is frequently tested by an operator to ensure their proper and safe working. Generally, all machinery and equipment in an hazardous field is monitored with sensors. A control room receiving information from these sensors is typically located far away from the hazardous field. The control room is provided with a data acquisition system to monitor all the functions of the equipments located in the hazardous field. Control room and the hazardous field are connected physically by means of wires/cables. Sensor derived data from the machinery and the equipment in the hazardous fields is transmitted through these hardwires to a data acquisition system. According to the data received, an operator in the control room alters the input data. The main drawback faced in these systems is the time constraint for the procurement of hardware and its installation. Generally, the data acquisition from equipment in ATEX environments involves complex hardware and software to transmit this data to the remote control area.

Since, conventionally used data acquisition systems are not compliant to requirements for use in a hazardous area, a European Union (EU) ATEX directive, requires that data acquisition systems be placed far away from the ATEX hazardous field. The ATEX directive consists of two EU directives describing what equipment and work environment is allowed in an environment with an explosive atmosphere. These regulations apply to all equipment intended for use in explosive atmospheres, whether electrical or mechanical, including protective systems. The conventional data acquisition system is provided with a conditioning and digitizing hardware. In order to transmit the data from the equipment to the remotely located data acquisition system, it requires long cabling. Since the cable routing is too long, signals generally get disturbed during transmission to the remotely located data acquisition system.

Conventional systems are mostly hardwired. Alternately, the conventional wireless data acquisition systems are too complex. Additionally, both hardwired and wireless data acquisition systems are not compliant to use in the hazardous environments. Therefore, it would be desirable to have a simple and low cost means ATEX compliant wireless hardware a...