Case Study 2: Assembly of a Detector Device
Case Study 2, showcases the Bovine Genus Heat Detectors which is a device designed to inform a farmer when his herd is in season. Between 50-70% of oestrus behaviour occurs during the hours of darkness which means that a farmer could miss many cows which are in season and so minimise his chances of successful breeding. The technology consists of a canvas pouch containing a plastic reservoir and a red dye. The plastic reservoir possesses a narrow opening of 0.1 mm in diameter, which connects the reservoir (and therefore the dye) to the interior of the canvas pouch.
The Genus Heat Detector is glued onto the back of the cow and the cow returned to the main herd. A cow, which is not in season, will not tolerate close contact or even false mounts, which would translate to the canvas pouch and its contents being compressed. The presence of the tiny opening provides sufficient resistance to prevent the dye from leaking out of the reservoir into the canvas pouch. However, a cow which is in heat will encourage prolonged contact and false mounts to such a degree that canvas pouch is severely compressed causing the red dye within the reservoir to be pumped through the tiny opening and into the canvas pouch staining it red.
Figure 1 details the Plastic Reservoir and Figure 2 shows an activated Genus Heat detector.
Although a very simple idea, there are very few manufacturing approaches which can accommodate the cutting/piercing of a 0.1 mm opening within plastic body such as that found within the Genus Heat Detector. Using ultrasonic cutting, it has been possible to achieve realistic manufacturing outputs for this idea, which would otherwise have been relegated to the waste paper bin. In addition, the canvas pouch was cut, shaped and welded together using Ultrasonic processing.