Pepperl+Fuchs Blog

Trash Day with Ultrasonic Sensors

Posted by Andre Clayton on Thu, Dec 06, 2018

garbage truck ultrasonic sensorsIn a typical day, a garbage truck visits over 800 homes and collects up to 14 tons of waste. These trucks usually operate up to 16 hours a day for six days a week and ultrasonic sensors are installed to enhance waste collection processes. Using high-frequency sound pulses, the sensors effectively detect fill level, distance, position, and presence while being unhindered by smoke, dust, light, and color. 

When the waste collection process begins at the end of a driveway, ultrasonic sensors in the truck’s two-section lift unit detect the trash can size. The lift unit adjusts to the size of the trash can, determining automatically if two lifts or one will be necessary to empty the waste. Once the trash can is empty, the trash can and lift unit must be lowered safely.  

Every time a garbage can is lowered, these sensors are used to ensure the work area remains clear. The sensors monitor the area underneath to prevent injury and object damage. If an object or person enters the area while the lift is being lowered, the sensor sends a signal to the controller to immediately shut down lift operation.

Visiting hundreds of homes in a day means garbage collects quickly in the back of a garbage truck. Ultrasonic sensors near the truck’s container feed monitor its fill level to prevent waste from spilling out. Each time a sensor detects that waste is about to pass the fill level, a signal is sent to the hydraulic press to compact the waste.

Ultrasonic sensors improve waste management processes by streamlining processes and preventing injury and overflow during waste collection.

Learn about Pepperl+Fuchs ultrasonic sensors


Topics: Ultrasonic Sensors

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