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Increasing Accuracy: A New Design and Algorithm for Automatically Measuring Weights, Travel Direction and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) of Penguins.

Afanasyev V, Buldyrev SV, Dunn MJ, Robst J, Preston M, Bremner SF, Briggs DR, Brown R, Adlard S, Peat HJ - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: Reliable discrimination between single and multiple penguin crossings is demonstrated.Users are able to define required levels of accuracy by adjusting filters and raw data are automatically recorded and stored allowing for a range of processing options.This paper presents the underlying principles, design specification and system description, provides evidence of the weighbridge's accurate performance and demonstrates how its design is a significant improvement on existing systems.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge, CB30ET, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
A fully automated weighbridge using a new algorithm and mechanics integrated with a Radio Frequency Identification System is described. It is currently in use collecting data on Macaroni penguins (Eudyptes chrysolophus) at Bird Island, South Georgia. The technology allows researchers to collect very large, highly accurate datasets of both penguin weight and direction of their travel into or out of a breeding colony, providing important contributory information to help understand penguin breeding success, reproductive output and availability of prey. Reliable discrimination between single and multiple penguin crossings is demonstrated. Passive radio frequency tags implanted into penguins allow researchers to match weight and trip direction to individual birds. Low unit and operation costs, low maintenance needs, simple operator requirements and accurate time stamping of every record are all important features of this type of weighbridge, as is its proven ability to operate 24 hours a day throughout a breeding season, regardless of temperature or weather conditions. Users are able to define required levels of accuracy by adjusting filters and raw data are automatically recorded and stored allowing for a range of processing options. This paper presents the underlying principles, design specification and system description, provides evidence of the weighbridge's accurate performance and demonstrates how its design is a significant improvement on existing systems.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Graph showing the oscillation of the weighbridge.This graphs shows the oscillation when a 4 kg weight is used for calibration. The high resonant frequency of the system ensures that penguin movements do not force the weighbridge to oscillate at resonant frequency. The top panel oscillating in air at this frequency has high drag which rapidly dampens the oscillation. As a result the system quickly (in a couple of seconds) stabilises and data can be used for calibration.
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pone.0126292.g004: Graph showing the oscillation of the weighbridge.This graphs shows the oscillation when a 4 kg weight is used for calibration. The high resonant frequency of the system ensures that penguin movements do not force the weighbridge to oscillate at resonant frequency. The top panel oscillating in air at this frequency has high drag which rapidly dampens the oscillation. As a result the system quickly (in a couple of seconds) stabilises and data can be used for calibration.

Mentions: Since the top panel rests on the load cells the bridge acts as a mechanical oscillator. Therefore, it is designed so that the penguin movements do not force it to oscillate at a resonant frequency. High capacity load cells and a low weight top panel result in a high resonant frequency (Fig 4) which reduces distortion and ensures a high level of accuracy. The current top panel is 800mm long, 400mm wide. The optimal length is a compromise between choosing a long length to increase the time each penguin remains on it (enabling a more accurate weight calculation) and a shorter length to reduce the likelihood of it being occupied by more than one penguin. If required, the length can be easily altered. The gateway was designed to be narrow enough to allow one penguin through at a time, without being so small that penguins were reluctant to travel across it. The weighbridge platform width was designed to fill the width of the RFID identification gateway. The weighbridge platform is set 95 mm above the surrounding ground to improve accuracy by preventing penguins from spreading their weight by standing both on the platform and surrounding ground at the same time.


Increasing Accuracy: A New Design and Algorithm for Automatically Measuring Weights, Travel Direction and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) of Penguins.

Afanasyev V, Buldyrev SV, Dunn MJ, Robst J, Preston M, Bremner SF, Briggs DR, Brown R, Adlard S, Peat HJ - PLoS ONE (2015)

Graph showing the oscillation of the weighbridge.This graphs shows the oscillation when a 4 kg weight is used for calibration. The high resonant frequency of the system ensures that penguin movements do not force the weighbridge to oscillate at resonant frequency. The top panel oscillating in air at this frequency has high drag which rapidly dampens the oscillation. As a result the system quickly (in a couple of seconds) stabilises and data can be used for calibration.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4404094&req=5

pone.0126292.g004: Graph showing the oscillation of the weighbridge.This graphs shows the oscillation when a 4 kg weight is used for calibration. The high resonant frequency of the system ensures that penguin movements do not force the weighbridge to oscillate at resonant frequency. The top panel oscillating in air at this frequency has high drag which rapidly dampens the oscillation. As a result the system quickly (in a couple of seconds) stabilises and data can be used for calibration.
Mentions: Since the top panel rests on the load cells the bridge acts as a mechanical oscillator. Therefore, it is designed so that the penguin movements do not force it to oscillate at a resonant frequency. High capacity load cells and a low weight top panel result in a high resonant frequency (Fig 4) which reduces distortion and ensures a high level of accuracy. The current top panel is 800mm long, 400mm wide. The optimal length is a compromise between choosing a long length to increase the time each penguin remains on it (enabling a more accurate weight calculation) and a shorter length to reduce the likelihood of it being occupied by more than one penguin. If required, the length can be easily altered. The gateway was designed to be narrow enough to allow one penguin through at a time, without being so small that penguins were reluctant to travel across it. The weighbridge platform width was designed to fill the width of the RFID identification gateway. The weighbridge platform is set 95 mm above the surrounding ground to improve accuracy by preventing penguins from spreading their weight by standing both on the platform and surrounding ground at the same time.

Bottom Line: Reliable discrimination between single and multiple penguin crossings is demonstrated.Users are able to define required levels of accuracy by adjusting filters and raw data are automatically recorded and stored allowing for a range of processing options.This paper presents the underlying principles, design specification and system description, provides evidence of the weighbridge's accurate performance and demonstrates how its design is a significant improvement on existing systems.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: British Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge, CB30ET, United Kingdom.

ABSTRACT
A fully automated weighbridge using a new algorithm and mechanics integrated with a Radio Frequency Identification System is described. It is currently in use collecting data on Macaroni penguins (Eudyptes chrysolophus) at Bird Island, South Georgia. The technology allows researchers to collect very large, highly accurate datasets of both penguin weight and direction of their travel into or out of a breeding colony, providing important contributory information to help understand penguin breeding success, reproductive output and availability of prey. Reliable discrimination between single and multiple penguin crossings is demonstrated. Passive radio frequency tags implanted into penguins allow researchers to match weight and trip direction to individual birds. Low unit and operation costs, low maintenance needs, simple operator requirements and accurate time stamping of every record are all important features of this type of weighbridge, as is its proven ability to operate 24 hours a day throughout a breeding season, regardless of temperature or weather conditions. Users are able to define required levels of accuracy by adjusting filters and raw data are automatically recorded and stored allowing for a range of processing options. This paper presents the underlying principles, design specification and system description, provides evidence of the weighbridge's accurate performance and demonstrates how its design is a significant improvement on existing systems.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus