How does an ECU work and What are its Functional Blocks?

Most vehicles usually have more than one ECM (electronic control module). An engine control unit (ECU) can be called the ECM governing the engine control functions. An ECU processes various input information based on different factors (engine temperature, engine speed, accelerator pedal position, fuel grade etc) to control fuel and ignition systems, while improving fuel economy with low emissions. Thus, you can say that an ECU works to assure ecological and economical engine operation.

An engine control unit is made up of several functional blocks which are as follows:

  • Power Supply – it usually is DC-DC converter where the battery voltage gets converted into voltage levels suitable for the digital circuitry and the MPU. However, in some cases, it can provide power for the analog sensors.
  • MPU – this consists of the microprocessor and memory (typically, RAM and Flash)
  • Communications Link – it helps in transmitting engine control data from or to the engine control unit.
  • Discrete Inputs – these inputs are on/off switch types.
  • Analog Inputs – they feedback the signals from sensors.
  • Frequency Inputs – these are encoder type signals (for example, vehicle or crank speed)
  • Switch Outputs – these are on/off switch types outputs.
  • PWM Outputs – often considered to be the most complicated outputs of the engine control unit, they help maintain duty cycle and variable frequency, in addition to controlling fan speed.
  • Frequency Outputs – they help maintain constant duty cycle (for example, idle speed control by stepper motor)

Now that you know about the functional blocks of engine control unit, you should keep a close eye on them to make sure that your engine is performing at its optimum. Remember that while controlling your car’s engine is the most processor-intensive task, the engine control unit is its most powerful computer that can ensure its proper functioning.

Engine Management System for Effective Functioning of the Engine

Every machine is developed by man. Thus, man is the sole controller of things that he has invented. Like many others, the generator is one among many other useful inventions done by him. But, what is it that keeps these appliances going once they are given the required power supply? Yes, it is the Engine. The Engine is responsible to make use of the power that is supplied to it so that the machine can generate the required output.

But, does the engine work by itself or is there a unit that monitors the working of an engine? It is the Engine Management System (EMS) that handles the entire working of the engine. This system is made up of components such as the sensors, actuators, relays and the Engine Control Unit that work together to make sure that the EMS gets the correct data needed to govern various engine functions.

The Engine Management System components Gensetcontains the Engine Control Unit or the Engine Control Module that acts as the brain of the system. It is with the help of this module that the system collects, processes, analyzes and executes the data that it receives. The ECU is made up of hardware and software section that consists of pre programmed microchips. These ECUs can be re programmed and updated as per the requirement of the engine.

Controlling the entire working of the engine that in turn handles the generator, the EMS along with the tiny mechanical parts in it plays an important role in the working of the machine. The advantage of such a system is that it no longer requires man to manage the working. You will have to simply supply some power to it. The EMS can be said to be a part that manages many different tasks within an engine making sure that there are no errors during the working and the machine word efficiently to give the expected results.

Know the Various Parts & Functions of Generator

We all know how a generator acts as a backup power supply when there is no constant power supply that is available. It has now become a necessity for every household and every company that requires electricity for various things to work. Most of us have been using generators at some point of time. But, have we actually tried to know about what are the different parts present in a Generator? Every part that makes this useful machine has something to do in the entire working of the appliance. The Generator is made up of 9 main parts;

  1. Engine
  2. Alternator
  3. Fuel System
  4. Voltage Regulator
  5. Cooling and Exhaust Systems
  6. Lubrication System
  7. Battery Charger
  8. Control Panel
  9. Main Assembly / Frame

Diesel_generator_on_an_oil_tanker

Let us now see how each part is useful in brief.

  • Engine: The engine is the most important part of the generator. It is the engine that is responsible to supply energy to the generator. It is the power of the engine that determines the capacity of the generator.
  • Alternator: This is the part that produces electrical energy that is sent out as an output. This electrical energy is produced by the conversion of mechanical energy given by the engine.
  • Fuel System: This is another important part without which that generator will not be able to produce the energy that it may need. It is important to make sure that there is enough fuel and the fuel system is in the proper working condition to pass on the fuel to the other parts.
  • Voltage Regulator: As the name suggests, this part is used to regulate the voltage of the electricity that is given out as the output. It helps in conversion from AC to DC as needed by the appliances.
  • Cooling and Exhaust Systems: The heat generated by the generator after long hours of working is treated by the cooling system. This system cools down the parts and prevents overheating. The Exhaust systems are used to give way to all fumes that may be formed due to the use of diesel and oils inside the machine.
  • Lubrication System: Since mechanical energy is converted into electrical energy, it is obvious that a generator is made up of smaller moving parts. The lubrication system manages the machine in such a way that the parts need not be harmed. The movement of every part is smoothened with the use of a lubricant.
  • Battery Charger: The performance of a generator is usually started using a battery. Thus, the battery has to be charged. But, there is a device called the battery charger that automatically charges the battery that can be used when needed.
  • Control Panel: This is the most important part among all the others as it is responsible of controlling every other part that makes a generator. The Engine Control Unit is a part of this panel that helps in controlling the things related to the engine of the generator. Like this unit, there are many others that can be performed through this.
  • Main Assembly / Frame: This is the structure that holds every necessary part of the generator together. It can be called as the outer body of the generator and makes sure that the generator is earthed to avoid serious issues.

Thus, these parts contribute to a great extent into the working of the entire machine. It is the working of each of these parts that helps in getting the desired output from the generator.

Maintenance Tips for Genset Engine Control Module

The Genset or the Diesel Generators are an excellent source of a standby power supply when the mains fail. The sturdiness, durability and reliability that they offer make them an ideal option to supply power when there is an emergency and no other source of power is available. Thus, maintaining the entire Genset along with the engine control unit is important. Let us take a look at a few maintenance factors that will help us prevent any further destruction of the device.

  1. A regular Genset Inspection:

Regular checkups that will help us identify minor issues in the fuel system, the exhaust system, the DC Electrical system or even the engine. Inspection of these parts will help us repair the parts and prevent leakages at an earlier stage.

  1. Check the Coolant system:

The Coolant is the most important part of the system. It should be cooled after every ise so that the engine works longer. After you shut down the machine, remove the radiator cap so that the engine may cool down. The exterior part of the coolant should be kept clean and free from all obstructions.

  1. Check the Fuel System:

The Fuel System should be used up within a specified time to prevent contamination of the fuel and the oil in the engine. It is important to drain the fuel tanks at regular intervals in order to prevent water vapor and dust from settling in it.

  1. Make sure of the Lubrication Services:

The oils in the engine need to be checked at regular intervals. It is important to change the oil and the filter as well. The disposal should be done carefully so as to avoid environmental hazards.

  1. Test the Batteries:

It is important to keep checking the batteries and keep it fully charged. Regular maintenance and inspection will avoid the start up problems of the generator. The batteries must be cleaned regularly and you would need to also make note of the gravity and the electrolyte levels of the batteries.

These preventive measures will not only help maintain the entire engine control unit in a Genset, but will also help in enhance the total performance of the system. It will also help cut down the maintenance and the repair costs that you may have to pay for in the future.

Know the Fundamentals of Magnetic Pick up Sensor

A magnetic Pick up Sensor is one among the most important parts in any kind of a machine. It is made up of a magnet, a coil and a pole piece. Some types of pickups are found to have a pole piece that is longer than the sensor, while some others have a comparatively smaller pole piece called the blind end. These pickup sensors do not require a steady power supply. The size of the coil and the magnet that is used in it is determined by the application it will be used for. These coils and magnets are easily available and can be used to detect a change in the magnetic field. Since the parts are available easily and at affordable rates, the magnetic pickup sensor is the most inexpensive device required by a machine.

Magnetic Pick-Up Sensor

Magnetic Pick-Up Sensor

The principles of designing this magnetic pickup sensor totally depend on the application it will be used for. The way the coil is placed determines the flow of the magnetic field. A slight change in the magnetic field will result in variations in the coil induction properties. This will result into a reduced voltage flow. At such times, you can make use of an additional electronic circuit that will help you increase the magnitude of the voltage that is produced.

These pickup sensors are not only meant for larger machines and the vehicles. They can be used in smaller machines such as exercising machines and in a check scanner at the banks as well. Since they are said to be inexpensive, using this device in smaller machines will not cost much and help in the efficient working of these machines. The magnetic pickup device promises accurate and proper working even if the temperature is found to be too high.

The durability and the efficiency that this device offers has contributed highly in making it a well used device in many different applications. The different places in which the magnetic pickup sensor is being used are mining, wind power, propane oil, solar power and many more. They have been efficiently used in all these applications that have resulted in giving out higher outcomes.

Engine Management System for Genset

A Genset is nothing but an electronic generator that converts mechanical energy into electrical energy. It usually makes use of fuel that is later converted into electrical energy with a few movements. Such gensets are usually used in offices, hospitals and other places where continuous power supply is needed. There are many issues that may occur while a genset is being operated. There are many conditions that may affect the way it works and the considerable output that it may give. Here is when we will feel the need of an engine management system that will take care of all the minor needs of a Genset.

Engine Management System for Genset

The most common problem that we might experience with a genset is the low power production. This is one of the simplest problems and may occur due to a loose throttle linkage, dirty fuel filter or even an excess of lubrication oil caused by leaking gaskets or connections. It is the duty of the technicians to observe the minor possibilities in order to save time and resources. Solving such minor problems in the earlier stage will help prevent serious issues from occurring in the future.

One should take enough care to see that the lubricating oil is changed regularly. If this remains unchanged for a longer time, the oil sits on the engine and oxidizes in such conditions. In fact one should be checking the oil and the fuel present in the genset. Regular tests through a planner will help you determine and schedule a date for the change of oil or fuel. This will prevent oxidizing or contamination of the oil or the fuel.

In places where the normal temperature is found to be below 70 degrees, it is advisable to switch on the generator once a week for a minimum of 30 minutes. This will help getting it to a normal temperature after which the oil may not dry off and nor will the generator lose its efficiency. A regular check up to see whether the parts are rusted or cracked or whether there is leakage in any part of the generator is important. An engine management system involves making sure that all the parts of the genset are in proper condition and work accordingly.

Fuel Consumption and Overload Capacity Key Standards for Selecting the Genset

Nations are now facing an increase in the population, an increase in the amount of power consumption and also an increase in the frequency of power cuts. Apart from the need for power at residential and commercial places during cut offs, it is also important to consider a better method for power generation and supply at remote areas. Generators have been proved to be a good solution to all the conditions mentioned above. This is a powerful machine that helps generation of high power that can be used whenever and wherever necessary.

Have you already thought of purchasing a generator? Buying a generator that would best suit your needs would not be as difficult as it would look, if you have analyzed your needs and are sure of what you want to buy. The installation and wiring of the generator can be done by a knowledgeable technician. It is better to get it done by an expert as you will be assured that the task is performed properly and thus avoid future problems.

The Genset that is manufactured to be installed outdoors comes along with a weather proof cabinet that protects the engine from even the worst weather conditions. The engine management system of the Genset is made simple for a technician to understand. There are many different factors that we would need to consider before finalizing the Genset that we would prefer buying.

  1. Generator Phase: The Generator sets are manufactured to produce either single phase or three phase power. Selecting a particular generator would highly depend on where you would be using it. Housing or Residential areas usually get a single phase power supply. Whereas industrial areas or small businesses get a three phase power supply. You can select a Genset that would best suit the power supply in your area. You need not invest in a three phase power Genset when you get only single phase power at home.
  2. Fuel: This is one of the most important factors that one would need to consider. With the increase in the prices of fuel and also high requirement of power, one needs to be considerate about his expenses in power generation. Diesel generators are said to be better than the gas generators that make use of propane or natural gas. The diesel generators can be used in places where there is no power supply. It is also found that there is about 30 to 50 percent saving when we use diesel generators instead of the ones that work on gas.
  3. Overload Capacity: This factor is considered to test the working of the generator in the worst situation. There are times when the generator would have to work for a longer time or are connected to appliances that require high amounts of power. At such times, it is necessary for the generator to supply continuous power. Here, is where the engine capacity of the generator needs to be considered.

The other basic features that one should look for while buying a Genset are:

  • It should have a replaceable air filter or a cleaner.
  • Most recommended engine is the liquid cooled four cycled Industrial duty Diesel Engine.
  • Liquid cooled machines are preferred rather than the air cooled ones as they create less noise and the engine lasts longer. But Generators with air cooling are portable.

Diesel Generator - Cumminspower

All these factors along with the other basic needs such as size, place of mounting, etc. will help select a better model of a Genset for your home or commercial use. As the title states, the two most important factors, those need to be considered while selecting Gensets are the fuel consumption and the overload capacity. In the description above, we have seen that considering fuel as a major factor will help reduce and maintain future costs of the working of the Genset and the overload capacity assures us about the working of the generator in worst situations as well. Another important factor that could be considered is the amount of maintenance that would be needed and also the type of engine management system tasks that would be needed to be performed.