Pre-cast Block/Batch

The TouchBatch™ Precast is a Windows-based batch system specifically designed for products; it's not an adaptation of a ready mix batcher. When launched in 1996, it was the first system in the industry to feature a touch-screen and graphical user interface. Its one-level menu design allows you to switch between windows with just one touch or mouse click, a real improvement over multi-level menu designs.

The TouchBatch™ Precast provides everything you need to run your plant: automatic, manual or remote batching, unattended and continuous operation from computer or from remote plant stations, full recordation of batch results and production reports... One computer does it all!

Designed from the ground up to be the easiest system of this kind to operate and maintain, the TouchBatch™ needs only one regular PC. No additional devices, such as the 'virtual' computers used in other systems, are needed.

TouchBatch™ systems are built with nonproprietary parts readily available from multiple vendors at competitive market pricing. This facilitates easy, low-cost maintenance, protects your investment against planned obsolescence.

Batch control

Base system: 1 mixer with 1 gate, 4 aggregate bins, 2 cement silos, 4 admixtures (metered), 1 water (metered), 1 aggregate scale, aggregate conveyor to mixer, 1 cement scale, cement aeration, vibrators on both scales.

Expandable to: 2 mixers with 3 gates each, 2 skip hoist, 12 aggregate bins, 8 cement silos, 12 admixtures, 2 waters, multiple aggregates scales, multiple cements scales, double feed gates (fast/slow), bin vibrators, multiple conveyors, bin indicator lamps.

Bin moisture control

Automatic moisture compensation of aggregates and water targets based on aggregates moisture content. Moisture percentages and specific gravities can also be entered by the operator on materials tables. Together with moisture control, yield adjustments based on specific gravities of aggregates keep the yield constant, as originally designed.

Mixer moisture control

Our mixer moisture control module is tightly integrated within the TouchBatch™ software and performs the same function as stand-alone moisture control computers at a lower cost.

Mixer moisture calibration parameters are stored in each mix design in order to produce a consisten concrete, regardless of changing material moistures. Recommended for dry-cast and SCC concrete production.

How does the moisture control work?

  1. During the dry mix cycle the TouchBatch™ computer reads the mixer moisture probe to determine the initial moisture of all dry materials in the mixer.
  2. The program calculates how much water to add to the mixer in order to increase the moisture of the dry materials to a pre-calibrated value.
  3. During the wet mix cycle the program reads the changing moisture as it stabilizes and determines if the final moisture value is within tolerance.

Color batching

The integrated color batch module eliminates the need of a separate color batch computer and keeps color ingredients in your concrete mix designs.

When batching a mix containing colors, the TouchBatch™ weighs up to 6 colors in one scale and synchronizes the discharge of the color ingredients into the mixer together with the rest of the concrete ingredients.

Job setup

Powerful job setup allows you to plan the production for the day for unattended operation.

Choices for each job include:

  • Mix design
  • Number of full batches or concrete volume required
  • Which mixer to use
  • Which mixer gate to use (up to 3 gates for each mixer)
  • Timing adjustments opening/closing of mixer doors
  • Sequence adjustments for concrete belts after the mixer
  • Next batch auto start
  • Discharge auto start mixer
  • Mixer pause to add materials by hand
  • Super Plasticizer addition as last ingredient before discharging mixer
  • Job priority
  • Demand station assignment

Demand stations

Located on the plant floor, demand stations allow plant operators to initiate the next batch and discharge the concrete. Demand stations can initiate different jobs to handle different batch sizes and mix designs, either one batch at a time or continuously.

The four functions handled by a demand station are:

  • Request next batch: choice of manual button, switch or automatic sensor
  • Request acknowledged: indicator light
  • Ready to discharge: indicator light
  • Initiate discharge: choice of manual button, switch or automatic sensor

Miscellaneous control features

  • Freewheeling: allows you to start batching the next load while still mixing current load.
  • Free-fall compensation and variable jog times automatically calculated for each batch. Times are automatically readjusted after each batch to compensate for changes in plant behavior.
  • Auto tare compensation to batch by net weight takes into account leftover material on scale hopper up to a maximum allowed tare weight.
  • Decumulative and continuous batching modes handles plants with no aggregate scale.
  • Bin switching during batching allows switching from empty bin to another bin with same material.
  • Discharge rate control for mixer gates.
  • Soft manual batch screen for manual batching or trimming materials during automatic batching. All amounts recorded in the inventory and in QCLog for each load.
  • Admix bottles empty interlock stops the batch if leftover liquid is detected in a bottle at batch start or batch end.
  • Admix flow check monitors pulses to stop the batch in the event of meter malfunction.
  • Admix pulse meter soft calibration to scale admix pulses according to user defined "volume per pulse" factor.
  • Batch simulator safely introduces a new operator to the system for training purposes. Inventory, QCLog and reports are not affected when operating in simulated mode.
  • Actual batched amounts recorded in QCLog and inventory after each load. Includes true water/cement ratio, material moistures and color ingredients.
  • DOT batching modes approved for NY, MN and CA Departments of Transportation.

Reports

  • Logging of all loads: auto loads, manual loads, manual adjustments to automatically batched loads, aborted loads.
  • View-Print-Export-Save functions for any report. Open exported reports in a spreadsheet or import them into another program. Import saved reports as text into a word processor.
  • Built in reports: sort print reports by batch number, mix, job, mixer. Material usage (total usage by job or by batch), aggregate, cement, admix and color inventory.
  • Built in filtering: filter reports by date range and keyword.
  • Custom reports: easily program up to 10 user-defined reports by selecting items to display for each column.

Remote operation and administration

Remote batching and remote operation through the Internet or within your internal network. Allows batching, job setup, training, printing reports and any other function as if you are in front of the batch computer at the plant.

Support and maintenance

Remote web support from our offices to update software, set up new features, troubleshoot, optimize and resolve operational issues during support calls as if an MPAQ technician is present at the plant.

Audit log feature tracks and stores changes to plant parameters, mix designs and other important information to allow for troubleshooting and resolving operational issues.

Automatic data backup of all batch data and programs to an internal solid state memory disk allows us to troubleshoot issues and restore the batch PC to a previous state when necessary.

Custom boot DVD provided with each PC allows to quickly reload the system disk from scratch if the Windows operating system is malfunctioning. Automatic maintenance routines for system disk keeps your PC running efficiently.

Equipment

  • Intel based PC with Windows 7-64 is used for job set up, batch control, batch recordation and reports.
  • Touch screen monitor support
  • Log printer: impact (dot matrix) or laser
  • Manual backup built with industrial-grade 120V-AC buttons directly driving the plant's solenoids.
  • Control panel built with nonproprietary parts, all available from multiple vendors.
  • PLC I/O for plant interface, with 120V-AC inputs and outputs. Note: PLC does not need any program loaded on a memory chip.
  • Individually fused output terminal strip with light indicators for blown fuse
  • Industry standard Cardinal scale indicators with digital output to computer are easy to maintain and calibrate. You can also use other brands of scale indicators.
  • Optional Hydronix moisture probes for mixer and aggregate bins