Crispbread & cooling technology – part 2
Derk Alkema (process engineer refrigeration technology) and Michael van der Meijden (3D draftsman) about the development, drawing and calculation work
A new project for a large fresh centre in Sweden. How do we approach that? In a number of blogs, we would like to take you into our world. In this blog: Derk Alkema (process engineer refrigeration technology) and Michael van der Meijden (3D draftsman) about the development, drawing and calculation work needed to realise the project.
“It’s always a challenge”, says Derk Alkema about his work at Voets & Donkers. “Especially if it’s such a big project that’s taking place in Sweden.” Derk is refrigeration technology process engineer, which means he makes process diagrams and classification lists. Or, in other words, that he determines how the refrigerant will flow through the installation and which components are required for it. “In this case, in the machine room, there are five compressors, three large condensers, five heat exchangers, four large vessels and eleven pumps”, he says. “It’s quite the installation: a beautiful, big and complex project.”
Fitting, measuring and sliding
Derk’s technical drawings are the guideline for drawing up the architectural drawings. These drawings are made by (among others) 3D-drawer Michael van der Meijden. Together with a team of specialists, he ensures that (eventually) the production department can get to work. How important it is that Derk and Michael do their work well, is shown on all fronts. For example, both the production department in Schijndel and the technicians in Sweden must soon be able to carry out their work flawlessly. But the drawings are also of great importance during maintenance or in the event of unexpected malfunctions. “The engine room is going to be 12 by 16.75 by 8.7 metres in size”, says Michael. “When I see all those components and parts in that room, I think: ‘how on earth is that technician supposed to be able to get to them?!’ That’s why we provide the machine room with platforms and stairs everywhere, so that the technicians can easily reach all components and parts.”
”On my screen, I see the machine room come to life in 3D.Michael van der Meijden3D draftsman
But not only is the work of Derk and Michael essential, it is also very cool. “On my screen, I see the machine room come to life in 3D”, says Michael. “I fit and measure and slide so that the installation fits into the space available for it. Since we work on the production in-house, I take a look in the workshop during each break. It’s a lot of fun to see how the installation you are drawing actually take shape.”
According to Michael, the in-house production is ideal anyway. “Because we act quickly across all the departments involved, any problems are solved this way. When the technicians encounter a problem, they ask me to take a look with them. We can always work it out together. And I also try to take that for future reference. That only makes things better.”
By working in BIM (Building Information Modelling), error margins are minimised as well. One of Michael’s close colleagues is mainly focused on that. “He’s inputting our drawings into BIM, in which other partners within this project are also uploading drawings.” Within this project these are, of course, mostly companies from abroad; international cooperation is therefore required. A working method such as BIM is indispensable for that. “With BIM, we immediately see if there are any ‘clashes’”, Michael says. “Here, for example, you can see that the power lines run through our air ducts. That would be a problem, of course.”
Such a ‘clash’ can therefore be anticipated and remedied in advance. This way, the margin of error on location is as small as possible. “We always think carefully”, says Derk. “But because this project is taking place in Sweden, it’s even more important. We don’t have a network of partners and suppliers there, so we have to take into account now that we cannot easily make adjustments in Sweden. This is why even more extensive testing is being carried out here in Schijndel before it goes out the door. So that we don’t face any surprises.”
Want to know more? Read the first blog of Peter Donkers here.
As a cheese producer, you know better than anyone that there are countless types of cheese and that each cheese has its own properties. The air conditions in your warehouse play a major role in this; after all, they determine to a large extent how your cheese matures and (therefore) tastes. Voets & Donkers is a specialist in creating exactly those conditions that optimise cheese maturation and give your cheese its own characteristic and perfect taste.
Optimum taste, quality and shelf life are of great importance in the fresh produce sector. At Voets & Donkers we have the knowledge, experience and expertise to offer added value as a refrigeration company. We have many customers in the fresh produce sector: from small-scale farms to large fresh centres. With cold stores and freezers in all shapes and sizes, we offer a wide range of possibilities. Whether it concerns a cold store on the farm, a vegetable-processing factory or a large (refrigerated) warehouse… we are at your service!
Sustainability is very important in our society today. We ‘have to’ get rid of the gas, and we also try to limit our use of electricity as much as possible. At Voets & Donkers, our installations contribute to sustainability in three ways: we use natural refrigerants, we develop energy-efficient installations and we make heat recovery possible.