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Fluorescent tubes get the crunch - safely

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Eco-Safe Technologies Pty Ltd

Safe disposal of fluorescent tubes

Controller type:Custom SPLat
Key features:Integral user interface; Tilt sensor; 2 photo-electric object sensor; 24V/8A reversible DC motor drive; 24V/6A DC motor drive with current monitoring; 2 off 24V/5A PWM outputs; Tailored form factor
Programming:Done by SPLat
Relationship:Since 2001
SPLat advantage:Cost saving through on-board custom interfaces; Quality; Support
How do you safely dispose of large numbers of fluorescent tubes without the mercury escaping? Tube Terminator is the answer, with a SPLat for brains.
Tube Terminator safe disposal of fluro tubes uses SPLat custom control card Eco-Safe Technologies, Melbourne, Australia had for many years been very happily using off the shelf SPLat controllers in their odour control equipment. When they started developing the Tube Terminator, it was therefore only natural for them to turn once more to us for the electronic controls.

Tube Terminator is a machine that safely crushes expended fluorescent tubes and captures the mercury vapours in a specially doped carbon filter. This sounds simple enough, but like so many "simple" ideas the actual execution involves a number of carefully developed techniques. The electronic controls play a big part in getting it just right, with object sensing, timing and sequencing. The controller also provides life-time timing of the filter, and includes measures to protect against a user trying to re-use an expended filter and risk dangerous releases of mercury.

Tube Terminator safe disposal of fluro tubes uses SPLat custom control card

When Karl Lapinskas at Eco-Safe first started developing the Tube Terminator, he used an off-the-shelf SPLat MMi200 controller plus a number of 3rd party specialised devices for driving high current solenoids and the like. When we designed a custom SPLat for the job about $150 worth of these devices got integrated onto the board at an incremental cost of about $10. There is also a photo-electric sensor for the tube position, and two DC motor drives (one reversible, one with current monitoring). The savings on these items more than covered the cost of the custom SPLat controller. This illustrates how a custom design can often save more than its cost in 3rd party add-ons.

Tube terminator safe disposal of mercury in expended fluorescent tubes
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