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Development of a diagnostic tool for performance analysis during the testing of agricultural implements

By Dr.-Ing. Zoltan Gobor, Bavarian State Research Center for Agriculture

A prototype of a device for automated attaching of the supporting wires was developed. The device consists of a main assembly mounted on the front-end loader, and a special carrier for the wire coil attached to a three-point linkage of the tractor. The subsystems for positioning, wire attaching and intermediate storage of the wire allow continuous pulling of the wire from the coil and its automated attachment to the longitudinal cables of the 7-8 m high trellis systems. The attachment of the supporting wires is controlled by a programmable logic controller (PLC) and carried out on defined distances whereas the tractor moves forward along the longitudinal cable with up to 1.8 km/h [1]. The possibilities and advantages of the usage of a redundant integrated mobile data acquisition system during the prototype testing for data acquisition and automated data analysis were described and discussed [2]. The mobile data acquisition system were based on a compact modular data logging system CompactDAQ (National Instrument) and an adequate software solution for data acquisition, created with LabVIEW (National Instrument). The data acquisition system provided important information considering the system performance and allowed error analysis in case of outage.

For the off-line data analyses a Scilab function was developed allowing automated visualisation and analysis of the data. The function returned information about the beginning and ending of single operations, time required for execution of single tasks and the total time of each complete sequence. Furthermore, information about the accuracy, stability and reliability of the subsystems of the prototype during the testing are calculated. Within a new project the developed prototype and the diagnostic tool should be improved in order to develop a zero-series device. The aim is inter alia development of the on-line diagnostic system based on CompactRIO (National Instrument) LabVIEW FPGA and LabVIEW Real-Time with integration of the Scilab code using LabVIEW to Scilab Gateway.


Development of agricultural implements, Prototype testing, Data acquisition, Automated data analysis, LabVIEW to Scilab Gateway

[1] Gobor, Z., Fröhlich, G. Portner. J. 2013. Automated Attachment of Supporting Wires in High Trellis of Hops – Initial Investigation and Study of Performance of an Advanced Prototype. Applied Engineering in Agriculture. 29(1): 11-16. @2013
[2] Gobor, Z. Data acquisition and automated data analysis in prototype development - Testing of the prototype for automated attachment of the supporting wires in hop gardens. 1st international Mobile Machine Control (MMC) conference, Nuremberg (Germany), 12-13. Jun 2013, Proceedings, CAN in Automation GmbH, pp. 03-15 - 03-21