KTrack Helps Grain Facilities with Traceability & Inventory

5 min video  /  2 minute read

Project Overview

The 2002 Bioterrorism Act and the 2014 Food Safety and Modernization Act specify that food facilities must be able to track contaminations back to their sources.

KTrack helps grain elevators meet traceability requirements and improve inventory management. KTrack is software from Konnection, a division of Kasa Controls & Automation. Konnection provides automation, data collection and other software solutions across many industries, including grain handling. KTrack is Konnection’s first off-the-shelf product offering. It’s an untraditional Ignition project in that there are no devices, PLCs, motors, or sensors to control; there are only a few memory tags.

Elevator operations include inbound and outbound loads as well as transfers between bins. Inbound loads are typically sampled to determine volume and grading factors. Volume and grading factors are the basis for payment to the producing farmer. Outbound loads go through a similar process in reverse. The concept is simple: record timestamp, origin and destination of every inbound and outbound load, and also record every time grain is transferred between bins.

For inbound loads, producer data is already collected by the load ticket/scale and accounting systems. The scale software was modified to send a web service call with the producer’s ticket information to KTrack. Additionally, KTrack provides intelligent bin suggestions to the scale operator.

With KTrack, users can determine:

  • Loads present in a contaminated bin
  • Possible sources of contamination
  • Bins that share origin with suspect loads
  • Customers who may have received grain from contaminated sources

This information reduces the time to contain a contamination and helps meet regulations.

With KTrack, grain elevators reduce the probability of accidentally mixing commodities — and they can segregate grain by grade factors, like moisture, to meet grain processing standards. Ultimately, this helps the merchandiser sell the grain to processors.

KTrack can text the producer as soon as the truck weighs out. Instantly, farmers know if their last load had the desired quality. Consequently, they can adjust their harvest plans earlier. The system provides a real-time log of information, such as how long a truck was on the premises, and if bins are near full. This operational data helps with capacity planning and notifies users of potential problems.

Ignition is already in place in many of the grain facilities Kasa has automated. In those facilities, our system controlling conveyors, gates, fans, etc., can use web services to query KTrack for inventory, issue transfer instructions, or synchronize bin levels.

KTrack can serve everything from a single location to hundreds of elevators spread across a region. It is typically installed as a single-license Ignition Gateway + Vision client along with a SQL Server Express on an existing desktop PC, or a single Ignition Gateway can serve several elevators. Each elevator has a separate database on a SQL server, but every client will run the same project with the proper database chosen by user account. For large companies, users can cycle between several elevators and review their inventory and operations.

Project Information

Created By:   Kasa Konnection

Konnection is the software division of Kasa Controls and Automation. Our software unifies various operational systems to provide high-level automated plant control and monitoring. Users can simultaneously manage multiple components of an operation through one centralized database. Konnection captures and stores data from PLCs, APIs and HMIs to create real-time, graphical and web-like control screens, accessible from any Java-enabled computer or device. We are an Ignition Premier Integrator.

Website: www.konnection4grain.com

Posted on September 1, 2016