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Homework Help: Help With Portable Weigh Station Using train Gauge

  1. Nov 13, 2008 #1
    Help With Portable Weigh Station Using Strain Gauge

    Allright I'm a freshman in college and we have a project due for this semester. The task was to create a weigh station using a strain gauge to measure anything from 2,500lbs cars to 96,000lbs semi-trucks, while giving 100lbs for error, portable and within a $50,000 to $100,000 range. This is my first big project and im quite stressed over it. I have a lot of questions so please help me out.

    The basic idea of my group was to construct it like this. We use an existing semi-truck trailor or trailor for over-sized loads. Only using axles and ect. from it becasue we will have to completely reconstruct the platform so the vehicles can pull up on it to be weighed. We will put ramps on the front and back of it that will be pulled up by cables on electric motors when transporting and lowered down to the ground when needed for weighing. The hitch will be pulled under the truck bed by a hydraulic arm to move itself out of the way so the ramp can come down and let the vehicles being weighed exit easily. The outer part of the platform will have 4 hydraulic jacks underneath it that will be lowered to the ground, this will lift the tires slightly off the ground causing the platform to be a fixed structure correct? The center part of the platform where the vehicles will actually rest will in a way be seperate from the outer part of the platform. It will have 2 I-beams running underneath it from side to side. The I-beams will be connected to an overhanging part of the fixed structure. Between the I-beams contact point on the overhang and where the over hang connects to the fixed structure the strain gauge will be placed. This would be a good spot due to the tensile laod on the overhang correct?

    Besides my 2 questions i had in that paragraph i have these questions. What source of power can i use to power the electric motors controlling the cables and the hydraulic arm pulling in the tow hitch? What metal can i use for the fixed structure? What metal can i use for the I-beams? Also it must work in the coldest of temperatures to the warmest of temperatures. Must withstand corrosion from the road salt and weather. And remember the other guidelienes from the first paragraph. Thank you very much.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2008
  2. jcsd
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