The construction equipment industry is consistently maintaining a growth rate of around 20 per cent. Infrastructure, construction and material management companies, as well as renting organisations have been investing huge amounts in equipment purchases. The response at the recently concluded Excon 2011 has shown a similar pattern. Buyers of concrete batching, pre-cast dry mortar and aggregate crushing plants have also confirmed the uptrend.Even though some customers are giving enough attention to the quality of automation, by and large the industry is still not focused enough to evaluate the software. Umesh Mukkannavar, Managing Director, IDS Technologies India, says, “The plant is as good as the system/software controlling the machine. It is good from the long-term perspective if the customers could spend enough time in evaluating capabilities of the software which controls the plant.”IDS Technologies India has now entered asphalt, pre-cast, dry mortar sectors, concrete accounts for bulk of their business. While sharing his decade-long experience in the concrete industry, Umesh elaborated that the equipment industry has travelled a huge distance from where it started. The industry has moved on from manual to semi-automatic to fully automatic batching systems. Technologically the industry has moved from microprocessor-based panels to PLC-based control to PLC and SCADA-based software.The customer can now realise the significance of good batching software and closely evaluate new technology offerings in the market. According to Umesh, a batching system is a pivot around which all site activities revolve. It directly affects performance of plants because it defines productivity, quality and consistency of the end product. Realising this, the market is now beginning to evaluate batching software. Unlike other industries, concrete, dry mortar, pre-cast and asphalt plant OEMs and customers don’t have to look to the West for quality software.One Indian company which is dedicated to batching applications since a decade is doing commendable job. IDS Technologies has been offering world-class batching solutions under the brand IDS Batch Solutions. The company offers a range of batching solutions to designed and configured for all market segments. The premium model IDS Batch GEGA is being rated as the finest and technologically most advanced batching software available in the market.IDS batch products are intelligent and self-thinking. The products observe, assume, analyse, think, command and supply, too. The manner in which IDS batch solutions handle batching features also differentiates it from others.All IDS batching systems incorporate a unique auto in-flight technology; IDS have batching solutions for every market segment; Every IDS batch product is a benchmark for the intended application, and all the IDS products are built on hardware supplied by companies of international repute. Thus, there is no dependency on the solution provider for hardware requirements. IDS batch systems ideally suit the operational conditions prevailing in developing countries across the world. They are highly preferred by both managers and site personnel for their user-friendly features and hassle-free consistent operation.The premium model IDS Batch GEGA is being rated as the finest and technologically most advanced batching software available in the market.IDS ADVANTAGESDesigned to cater to future requirements.Developed on proven and rugged net platform.Higher plant productivity.Improved concrete quality.High batch accuracy and consistency.Elaborate and precise reporting.Manual consumption recording.Multilevel user access control. Multi-user platform.Software operation prompted by language of batcher’s choice.Single software for plants of any size or complexity.Simple to operate.Evaluating a Batching System/SoftwareMust automatically produce consistent and high quality concrete with optimum thoroughput.Should be rugged, reliable and dependable.Should ensure ease of operation, troubleshooting and support.A system must be scalable and cater for future requirements.It should incorporate various basic, useful and value- added features.Should handle and process all relevant data.Versatility in reports generation and analysis.Must guarantee safety and security to personnel, plant and data.A system must provide process control and monitoring.It should record, maintain and present process activities.A Better Batching SystemA good system can give you more output. For example, if you have a 30 cu m capacity batching plant you may insist for 30 cu m output. In addition, a good batching system can allow parallel activities at the site and increase your productivity. You can also avoid losing time at the end of each load, end of each order or when the truck is not ready etc, and thus increase practical productivity of your plant and make more profits.Avoid hassles at the site and save time. Your system should offer many operational features which can safeguard you from problems arising out of frequent power failures, inconsistent moisture in aggregate, mechanical wear-and-tear, material wastage, and problem of handling rejected or access concrete etc.Insist for features which guarantee consistent quality of concrete. A good system should have many features that help you maintain quality of concrete in each load. It is particularly true to large capacity plants where the batch size is large. Such features ensure that you still maintain quality of each load in spite of physical or mechanical problems during production. Your products will never fail quality tests and you can deliver product according to the specifications.Your system should protect your plant, personnel and data. A good system can protect your plant and personnel from any untoward accidents or untimely damage to your plant or part of your plant. The system should protect your secrecy restricting data access to only those who should get it. A good system can also guide your operator for proper usage of the system and protect plant and material or production against disoperation.