Designed in 1899, the Park of Atraccions of Tibidabo is located on the Tibidabo mountain that is part of the Collserola range of hills in Barcelona city. One of the key atractions at the park is Atalaya, an imposing 50 metre high metal structure that takes visitors up to a height of 551 metres above sea level. Today, it´s still a truly unique ride that hasn´t lost its ability to offer an unforgettable experience.
Throughout spring and summer about 7000 people visit the park every day and very few leave the park without having a ride on the Atalaya.
The swinging arm on the Atalya is required to reach maximum speed and then rapidly come to a stop when the passenger compartment at the end of the arm reaches maximium height. Over the past few years the Atalaya had been using a soft starter system system to help control this action, however this set up caused a swaying movement that made passengers feel very unsafe at such a high altitude.
There were also problems in windy conditions. The inefficiency of the soft starter system at low speeds (the transition from 50Hz to zero or vice versa) meant that the the Atalaya swinging arm was accelerated or braked until the motor reached the nominal speed where it could deliver full torque. Again this caused discomfort for the passengers on the ride.
This application for Optidrive Plus 3GV was undertaken by Rasesa Automatismos, Invertek Drives official distributor in Catalonia. Based in Sabadell,Barcelona, this company is part of a network of distributors developed by Invertek Drives (Spain).
Rasesa Automatismos were able to demonstrate how they could eliminate the negative issues being experienced on this ride by using the advanced motor control strategy available with the Optidrive Plus 3GV. The abilty of the Optidrive Plus 3GV to deliver 200% of torque at 0.0Hz and was the key deciding factor.
The new system on the amusement park ride is based in a 22kW AC motor with a break controlled by a 400V, 22kw Optidrive Plus 3GV. The results has been truly amazing, ensuring that the Atalay will remain a trusted and busy visitor attarction at the park for many years to come.
The Atalaya ride now comes to a stop in a very controlled manner, with no swaying motion in the passenger compartment after the swinging arm has been brought to a halt. Windy conditions no longer have a negative effect on the ride performance and with no limits on the number of starts per hour that can be undertaken, as was the case with the soft starter system, the productivity of the ride has dramatically increased.
Mr. Ramoneda and Mr .Serracant of Rasesa Automatismos were delighted with the results, commenting: "The motor control performance of the Optidrive in this application is excellent, providing such precise control of a fifty metre swinging arm. Once again Optidrive has delivered outstanding results in a very challenging application!"