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We don’t like boundaries. So when we developed Rapid Fire automation technology we dared to be different; unleashing the world’s first wireless, battery operated, solar charged and ‘cloud-based’ automation technology.

With Dual Vector snowmaking technology + Rapid Fire automation, you’ll increase production by up to 30%, open more terrain with the best possible snow surface & maximize efficiency in all temperatures.

Plus, all Dual Vector snowmaking technology is ‘auto-ready’ so you can automate FIXED and MOBILE units without fixed infrastructure, anytime.

 

Rapid Fire Automation Hardware

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Portable 'Black Box' Actuator

The Black Box is the world’s first wireless, portable, battery operated & solar charged actuator. Requiring no fixed infrastructure, Black Boxes automate Dual Vector snowmaking units & Fuse Air + Water Hydrants in minutes.

The simple, robust design includes a PCB board, battery, gear motor, solar panel and high gain antenna. Enclosed in a watertight housing, the PCB board includes GPS, motor controller, microprocessor, 900Mhz radio, and Blue-tooth technology.

Built to withstand the toughest conditions with military tested hardware, the Black Box eliminates field maintenance and down time. If repairs are required, simply swap out module, Black Box or operate manually by reinstalling the STEP control handle to the snowgun or hydrant.

The modular, portable system is designed to move from trail to trail if required to maximize production, run time and ROI.

Rapid Fire is the first automation to semi or fully automate FIXED & MOBILE snowmaking units to maximize the production, efficiency & snow quality of your entire snowmaking fleet.

BLACK BOX ACTUATORSPECIFICATION
OperationActuations and step changes can be adjusted manually or via the ‘cloud-based’ UI; units can be controlled from any device with Internet connectivity and login credentials
Power Source Black Box actuators operate with a battery that is charged with a flexible, military tested solar panel Black Boxes can also operate with existing mains power / communication line if preferred
CommunicationCellular modem or LAN, radio 900MHz mesh network.
Range4-10 mile / 6-16 km
ControlWeb-based / cloud software; customized UI + REPORTS. Responsive UI design can be accessed from any device with an internet browser and login credentials.
Temp. RatingAll components; -40°F/-40°C
Service + Maintenance No downtime or field maintenance; simply swap out module, Black Box actuator or operate manually by reinstalling STEP control handle to the snowgun or hydrant.
Production EfficiencyIncrease production by up to 30%. Programmable adjustments; know how much snow is made at each location / no over production
VersatilityBlack Boxes automate SL snowmaking units + Fuse hydrants. Easily retrofitted to units already in field enabling you to automate your equipment at any time and without fixed infrastructure. Heavy duty, water tight Black Box enclosures are easily transported with flush mount handles and interlocking stacking ribs

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FUSE HYDRANTSPECIFICATION
OperationManual or automatic, can also operate all third-party snowmaking technologies
Max. Operating Pressure1000 psi / 68.94 bar
ConfigurationAbove ground pipeline, buried pipeline + in-ground pits
Hydraulically BalancedLow torque: effortless and safe to manually open and close
Construction Modular air + water valves; easily customized to suit any system / operation
Pressure RegulationEasily regulate desired water pressure. Optional wireless pressure transducers can be fitted to air / water for pressure and medium temperature readings. Transducers can be relocated when Black Boxes are moved
Auto-DrainOn shut down, the Fuse Hydrant depressurizes hoses; no springs, balls or o-rings - prevents clogging and freezing. If required, Fuse Hydrants can be configured to flush water and air lines to clear debris/moisture prior to operation
Servicing Fuse hydrants installed to buried pipelines and in-ground pits are easily serviced from the surface
Distance / LocationSnowmaking units can be operated at ANY DISTANCE ABOVE or ADJACENT to the hydrant location
Hose Hard hose is recommended

‘FUSE’ Air + Water Hydrant

The cornerstone of Rapid Fire technology is a new hydraulically balanced air + water hydrant. Manual or automatic, Fuse Hydrants optimize snowmaking efficiency and capacity by streamlining start up and shut down procedures.

The Fuse Hydrant modular design can be customized to any configuration including;

  • Water only

  • Air + water

  • Above ground pipeline

  • Buried pipeline

  • In-ground pits

Fuse Hydrants installed to buried pipeline and in-ground pits are easily serviced from above ground. Plus, you can operate Dual Vector snowmaking units and all third-party technologies at any distance above or adjacent to the hydrant location without a pit.

Hydraulically balanced, Dual Vector technology is safely operated at high water pressures (up to 1000 psi / 68.94 bar) boosting production and snow quality to new heights.


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Portable Weather Station

An aspirated weather station is positioned close to a group of Dual Vector snowmaking units & Fuse Hydrants so step actuation is based on localized wet bulb temperature in real-time.

Weather stations continually communicate with the gateway and operate with the same wireless battery, solar & GPS technology as Black Boxes.

Portable Repeater

Radio communication is most effective within line of sight; portable repeaters maintain signal strength over mountains, in gully’s and built up areas where disturbances may occur.

A survey is conducted to establish the location and number of repeaters required for each system. Repeaters are built with the same enclosure, battery & solar panel as Black Boxes so they can be located anywhere on the mountain without fixed infrastructure.


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Powered Gateway & Repeater

The powered gateway is the central communication hub between Rapid Fire cloud software Black Box actuators, repeaters & weather stations. Each gateway contains a cellular modem with 2 x telecom provider SIM cards & Ethernet / LAN to communicate with the cloud server.

Gateways communicate with repeaters, weather stations & Black Box actuators via a 900Mhz mesh radio network. The mesh network connects directly, dynamically and non-hierarchically to Black Boxes to efficiently route data to / from the gateway. Mesh networks self-organize and self-configure, which increases reliability and fault tolerance while minimizing down time and maintenance. One gateway can communicate with a large number of portable weather stations, repeaters and Black Box actuators.

Compact powered repeaters are installed to lift stations and accessible outlets to create a robust communication network in all conditions and locations across the mountain.

Wireless ‘Cloud Based’ Network

Rapid Fire automation is built with the latest computing, radio technology and military tested hardware. The simple, modular system provides unmatched flexibility to relocate and expand your automation network according to budget and seasonal snowmaking needs.

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User Interface / Cloud Server

Rapid Fire automation is controlled with a cloud-based software accessible from any device with Internet connectivity / login credentials. The cloud software communicates with the gateway to control Black Box actuators installed to Dual Vector snowmaking units & Fuse Air + Water Hydrants in real-time.

The Rapid Fire database records operational data including wet bulb temperature, run time and production output for each location even if the Black Box is moved to a new location - data is easily extracted for customized reports.

A user-friendly UI includes manual & auto modes, map views, group selection tools, operational data & Black Box status including location, signal strength & battery charge. Firmware updates are pushed from the cloud software, so hardware is always up-to-date.

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Automation With No Boundaries

‘Black Box’ Actuators can be installed to Dual Vector snowmaking units and Fuse hydrants giving you unbeatable flexibility to ’semi’ or ‘fully’ automate your snowmaking system without fixed infrastructure, anytime.

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fully automatic system

  • Black Box installed to Dual Vector snowmaking unit; controls Dual Vector snowmaking unit STEP position according to WBT in REAL TIME

  • Black Box installed to Fuse Hydrant; opens & closes Fuse Hydrant according to wet-bulb temperature (WBT) in REAL TIM

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SEMI-AUTO SNOWGUN

  • Black Box installed to Dual Vector snowmaking unit; controls Dual Vector snowmaking unit step position according to WBT in REAL TIME

  • Operator required to manually open & close Fuse Hydrant or third party hydrant(s)

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SEMI-AUTO HYDRANT

  • Snowmaker manually operates Dual Vector snowmaking unit / changes STEP position

  • Black Box installed to Fuse Hydrant; opens & closes Fuse Hydrant according to WBT in REAL TIME


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Operational Advantages

  • Customized reports, baseline data & analytics

  • Efficient use of resources; Rapid Fire measures and tracks water pressure and flow at each hydrant location even when Black Boxes are relocated

  • Minimize down time

    • No diagnostics or field maintenance

    • Dual Vector snowmaking units & Fuse Hydrants can be manually operated by removing the Black Box & reinstalling the step control handle in minutes

  • Snowmaker safety

    • No electrical panel / no high voltage

    • A certified electrician is not required to install / remove Black Box actuators

    • Fuse Hydrants are hydraulically balanced – safely operated at high water pressures (up to 1,000psi / 68.94 bar with hard hose)

    • Black Boxes are light and easy to manage in the field

  • All Dual Vector snowmaking units & Fuse Hydrants are auto ready; units already in the field are easily automated / retrofitted

  • Interchangeable Black Boxes are designed to be relocated to other Dual Vector snowmaking units or Fuse Hydrants if capital budget does not allow for full system automation

  • Many snowmaking departments are facing staff shortages; Rapid Fire automation is a quick and cost effective solution to assist seasonal operations

Infrastructure & Environmental Savings

  • Lowest capital cost compared to other automated snowmaking technologies

  • Battery operated / solar charged:

    • Snow Logic is the only supplier to offer wireless & cloud based automation

  • No pit, electrical or communication lines

    • Fastest installation; Rapid Fire automation can be set up in days, not months

    • Capital outlay significantly reduced

    • Lowest environmental impact and disturbance

    • No excavation

    • No re-vegetation or associated labor costs

  • Rapid Fire will also automate third-party snowmaking & hydrant technologies to integrate with existing infrastructure

  • Low Dba noise level

    • Dual Vector snowmaking units emit little to no noise disturbance - excellent for residential / built up areas