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DryTrack® CDK is a robust, simple to use, accurate and repeatable capacitance-based moisture content measuring and monitoring system developed for continuous drying kilns (CDK).
It takes the “guess work” out of determining when your lumber is dry. The DryTrack® CDK system provides continuous real-time moisture content information to the CDK control system. When used with our DrySpec® CDK controls the information provided by DryTrack® CDK is used to control or assist in the control of the lumber moving through the CDK resulting in uniform final moisture content and tight standard deviation. DrySpec® CDK is the only CDK control system with the ability to translate moisture content information into actionable data to help control the advance of the lumber in a way that is beneficial.
DryTrack® has been in service on batch kilns around the world operating in low, high and ultra-high temperature applications which have demanded that these systems be rugged, accurate, repeatable and extremely reliable. Especially when used in kilns at nearly 400°F!
After installing the DryTrack® system on nearly 100 batch kilns in the USA, this technology has been enhanced to be used in the continuous drying process. To date, DryTrack® CDK with DrySpec® CDK are in use in more than 15 CDKs to automatically adjust push rates producing high-quality lumber with low moisture standard deviation.
DryTrack® meter cards are installed in aluminum NEMA 4 enclosures on the outside of the kiln walls close to each measuring point.
There are no DryTrack® CDK electronics or environmentally sensitive pieces of equipment inside of the kiln. The enclosures that house the externally mounted meter cards are kept cool and dry by a low-pressure air system which maintains a positive pressure inside the meter box. This provides an environment that ensures a long life for the measuring cards and enables us to offer a 3-year warranty, the longest in the industry!
The meter cards are located close to the measuring points to minimize the possibility of electrical interference with CDK equipment and the sensitive capacitance-based moisture readings. In addition to simplifying field wiring, the close proximity of the meter cards to the sensors ensures high accuracy and long-term repeatability.
The photo shown here displays four of the eight moisture content reading stations that are located toward the end of each drying section. They measure the moisture content of the lumber as it is about to exit the drying section. An identical set of arms are located at the other end of the drying section on the opposite track to measure the exiting dry lumber from that track.
The arms are shown in the lowered position which allows the lumber to move unimpeded. Once the lumber stops moving, the arms are automatically raised and the blades on the outer edge of the arms make contact with the DryTrack® CDK plates that extend out of the lumber packs roughly 6” to 8”. When the arms are in the raised position (the contact position) they provide the data readings to the DrySpec® CDK control system via serial connection to the PLC from the meters on the outside of the CDK walls.
The DryTrack® CDK system will collect moisture readings from the meter cards and provide moisture content data to the DrySpec® CDK control program for push rate adjustment. DrySpec® CDK controls all aspects of the drying process using intuitive operator interfaces, various forms of automatic pusher control, trending and product-specific recipes