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MDA Technologies 3/2015

MDA Technologies 3/2015

MEASUREMENT AND CONTROL

MEASUREMENT AND CONTROL Firefighting vehicles equipped with joysticks and position sensors In the thousands of kilometres of tunnels found in Italy, the joystick controllers and rotary position sensors by Curtiss-Wright Corporation’s legacy brand of Penny & Giles make a big difference in the firefighting and the rescue operations. The friction joystick provides easy control and movement of the firefighting equipment installed on the firefighting vehicles. Following the devastating fire that ripped through the Mont Blanc tunnel in 1999, Brescia Antincendi International S.r.l. (BAI) tirelessly researched and developed a vehicle that could quickly and easily access and retreat from tunnels. The result was the company’s 1 st generation Janus 4000 Bifronte, a unique dual-faced, dual-direction fire and rescue vehicle which, thanks to its all-wheel-drive transmission and automatic gearbox, was capable of driving in either direction at speeds of 120 km/h. Additional all-wheel counter steering capabilities meant the Janus 4 000 was also able to turn in very limited spaces when the rear wheels were turned in the opposite direction to those on the front and even move in an almost sideways ‘crab-like’ manner when they were turned in the same direction. For Curtiss-Wright, the project started when BAI were looking for a friction joystick to control the fire fighting equipment installed on its second-generation fire fighting and rescue vehicle, which has been specifically designed for high temperature fire fighting operations in isolated and low visibility tunnel environments. This new vehicle features updated fire fighting equipment including roof and bumper mounted fire monitors (water canons), each operated by its own Penny & Giles friction hold joystick controller installed within the vehicle’s comma nd cabin. The up/down function of each water canon is operated using the joystick’s X- axis, with the rotational function being provided by NRH275DP rotary position sensor fitted to the bottom of each joystick. For both roof and bumper mounted water canon applications, the controllers are also used to operate water spray or jet functions, lighting, reach and direction. To ensure that water canons can be operated 36 MDA Technologies 3/2015

01 Penny & Giles JC1500 joystick controllers installed in the Janus 4000 fire truck 02 Brescia Antincendi International S.r.l. fire trucks under all conditions, even if the cabin is overcome with smoke, the position of each canon can be easily identified by looking at the position of the joystick on the command cabin’s control panel. Commenting on the reason for specifying a friction hold joystick, BAI’s Enrico Callura says: “The friction joystick provides easy control and movement of the firefighting equipment installed on the firefighting vehicles. Feedback from users of the Janus 4 000 stated that, without having to refer to the control panel’s display, they wanted to easily identify the position of the joystick. The decision to specify Penny&Giles was based on BAI’s specific requirement for a joystick that was completely compatible with the rotary sensor and featured a low-profile design so the sensor could be fitted to its base – and with an under-panel depth of just 53 mm, the JC1500 was ideal.” Single axis joystick controller The Penny&Giles single-axis, Hall-effect joystick controller is designed for heavy duty applications such as on and off highway vehicles, where maintaining smooth proportional control is essential. Standard features include an IP69K rating on the sensor assembly; spring-to-centre or friction-hold lever action; lock and detent features; 5Vdc or 9-30Vdc supply; dualchannel output with optional ramp directions; analogue (Vdc) or digital (PWM) outputs; and an operating range from -40 to +85°C. Rotary position sensor The NRH275DP rotary position sensor consists of a housing activated by a magnet. It is designed for extreme temperatures and provides OEMs with a wide range of parameters including measurement range, clockwise or anticlockwise output. This flexibility provides control to configure the sensor to best suit the needs of OEMs. For example, the sensor can be configured to be used for a control function and position monitoring or display purposes at the same time. www.cw-industrialgroup.com About Company name: Curtiss-Wright Corporation Headquarters: Charlotte, USA Turnover: $ 2.5 billion Employees: 9,000 worldwide Products: Valves, Pumps, Motors, Generators, Instrumentation, Controls, Actuation, Sensors, Embedded Computing, Surface Treatment services

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