Cat GRADE With 3D Brings Added Utility, Versatility, Operating Efficiency

The new Cat GRADE with 3D system for D3K2, D4K2 and D5K2 track-type tractors is an automated grade control system using GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) technology to precisely position the machine’s blade, without operator input, from first rough cut to finish grade. For added utility, GRADE with 3D incorporates the Cat AccuGrade Ready Option, which allows use of universal-total-station and laser references for automated control.

The new system assists operators of all skill levels achieve specified grades faster and more accurately, compared with conventional methods, while also reducing staking costs and saving rework expense, fuel and machine hours, according to the manufacturer.

Cat GRADE with 3D is an optional system, installed at the factory and integrated into the design of the machine. The GNSS antennas are securely mounted on top of the cab, eliminating the need for mast-mounted antennas on the blade, along with related cables. GNSS receivers and a data radio are also neatly housed in the roof structure. Three inertial measurement units monitor machine orientation, and position-sensing hydraulic cylinders monitor blade position. The integrated installation eliminates the need to remove components at the end of the day.

When in its GNSS mode, GRADE with 3D can provide one-tenth foot-level accuracy by employing real time kinematic positioning technology, which integrates multiple satellite signals with information from an on-site, base-station receiver or other corrections device. The system compares machine location and cutting-edge position relative to an on-board design plan, then automatically positions the blade via an integrated, electro-hydraulic valve module.

The system also delivers this information to the operator via an in-cab display. The system’s 10-inch, color, touchscreen display is incorporated into the dash and provides multiple, configurable views that give the operator a comprehensive view of the site plan and of work in progress. For added convenience, control buttons for activating the system are integrated into the joystick levers.

GRADE with 3D, when activated, automatically controls the movement of the machine’s blade, both lift and tilt, to conform to digital jobsite plans. The only input required of the operator is to steer the machine, reducing overall manual input required by an estimated 80 percent. The new system also is optimized to work with other Caterpillar dozing features, such as AutoCarry, which is designed to assist the operator in attaining optimum blade loads in varying ground conditions, while reducing track slip. GRADE with 3D has the potential to increase productivity by as a much as 50 percent on some projects, according to the manufacturer.

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Global Aircraft Hydraulic System Market Size, Growth Rate, Top Players Analysis, Statistics, Revenue and Forecast to 2025

Aircraft Hydraulic System Market Global Industry Report provides a detailed analysis of the market historical data, facts, regional sales, industry share, growth factors, top manufacturers overview and forecast to 2025. Aircraft Hydraulic System market research study presents brief information about definitions, products market features, competitive landscape, market segmentation, business opportunity and expert opinions.

Development policies and plans are discussed as well as manufacturing processes and cost structures. This report also states import/export, supply and consumption figures as well as cost, price, revenue and gross margin by regions North America, Europe, Japan, China and other regions can be added.

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Electrification of Mobile Hydraulics Keeps on Truckin’

With advances in variable-speed electric drives, more and more industrial hydraulic power units now use variable-speed pump drives as an energy-efficient alternative to conventional fixed-speed drives with variable-displacement pumps. Several companies now offer similar drives for off-road equipment, but Allied Motion Technologies, Amherst, N.Y., recently introduced a variable-speed hydraulic pump drive intended for power steering systems in trucks, buses, and similar vehicles.

Allied Motion’s EHS series brushless hydraulic pump motors contain integrated drive electronics to directly drive electrohydraulic pumps on large trucks, buses, and other commercial vehicles. The motors come in two frame sizes and seven models rated for 24- or 48-Vdc power to meet the requirements of a wide range of vehicle sizes. Allied normally supplies the motor itself but can supply complete assemblies incorporating an integrated hydraulic pump.

Allied Motion Technologies now offers 24- and 48-Vdc electric motor drive for powering hydraulic pumps in work truck, commercial, and off-highway vehicles.

EHS series motors provide vehicle OEMs or their second-tier suppliers with a fully integrated electric power steering system that substantially improves vehicle fuel efficiency over all-hydraulic systems. They also offer greater design flexibility because the pump can be installed just about anywhere in the vehicle rather than having to be powered by a vehicle’s gas or diesel engine or power takeoff. Additional benefits include reduced lifetime maintenance and repair costs. Allied officials say EHS electric pump drive motors have exhibited durability and long life in even the harshest environmental conditions.

The EHS’s on-board electronics enable the motor to serve as an intelligent node in modern vehicle networks. Thus, the EHS provides an important component of an intelligent motion solution for electrohydraulic power steering and auxiliary power systems for heavy trucks and commercial buses.

Allied officials also point out that the pump drive motors are also well suited for use in lift trucks with hydraulic steering, larger warehouse trucks, construction vehicles, and agricultural equipment.

Read more: Electrification of Mobile Hydraulics Keeps on Truckin’

High-Speed Solenoid Valves Control Hydraulic Pump Displacement

Pumps using digitally controlled displacement technology make it practical to replace mechanical gearboxes in mobile equipment with hydraulic transmissions, providing fuel savings of up to 20% and productivity increases of nearly 30%.

Much of the mobile equipment in use today operates with conventional hydraulic pumps controlled by changing the stroke of pistons with a swashplate mechanism. Because swashplate position is not easily controlled, energy is lost through volumetric and mechanical inefficiencies. A new technology, the Digital Displacement Pump overcomes these limitations by using multiple radial cylinders that are enabled and disabled in real time with ultra-fast mechatronic valves controlled by an embedded computer.

This cutaway illustration of a 12-cylinder Digital Displacement Pump shows position and orientation of major components.

The Digital Displacement Pump (DDP) is a radial-piston pump with cylinders stroked by a cam ring. Each cylinder can be turned on and off individually, and each has its own control system: solenoid-operated poppet valve, a check valve, and a piston position sensor. When configured as a Digital Displacement Pump Motor (DDPM), each piston has two solenoids, and the unit can be used as a pump or a motor. These solenoids can be activated or deactivated in as little as 30 msec to limit oil flow through each cylinder as the load requires. In essence, it is a multi-step transmission with each step capable of varying its output flow.

The decision to activate or deactivate a given cylinder is made continually with each shaft revolution to meet the pressure demand set in the pump controller. The number, orientation, and size of the pistons in use can vary widely. A common configuration uses 12 cylinders arranged in three groups of four, although the manufacturer has built a unit with 68 pistons for a wind turbine application.

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Kinshofer’s New HPXdrive System Provides Improved Closing Force, Longer Lifecycle

Kinshofer has introduced the low-maintenance HPXdrivesystem, which forms a new generation of grab technology with greater performance and longevity. Historically, the open and close functions of attachments were achieved by using hydraulic cylinders. However, this technology, which has been tested and proven reliable by Kinshofer customers worldwide, features two shafts which run opposed and have a helix thread. It is hydraulically driven by a single piston.

This design gives the HPXdrive a longer lifecycle and allows it to deliver full and constant closing force throughout the entire open and close cycle. The HPXdrive system is compatible with Kinshofer’s multi-purpose grapple, demolition and sorting grapple, clamshell bucket, timber or rock grapple, NOX-Tiltrotator, and also for special attachments like the forceps grapple.

“As a company, we are always engineering new ways to improve productivity and profit potential for our customers. That effort is clear with this new technology,” said Francois Martin, Kinshofer North America general manager. “The HPXdrive achieves high and constant closing force during the entire cycle, allowing contractors to complete jobs faster. In addition, the tool is almost maintenance free, making it extremely cost effective.”

The HPXdrive system delivers full closing force from the beginning of the process, when the shells are in the open position, to the end, when shells are closed. The constant closing force ensures optimal strength and powerful penetration even in tough soil or while handling heavy material. Operators also will experience improved gripping capabilities and precise positioning due to the high constant closing force.

Additionally, all moving parts in the HPXdrive continually run through a self-lubrication oil bath. This leads to a long service life with very little wear and tear and required maintenance, resulting in a minimum 50 percent longer lifecycle compared to conventional hydraulic attachments, according to the manufacturer.

Kinshofer achieves the HPXdrive’s compact design and low overall height by building it with a fully enclosed system with no protruding parts, such as cylinders and short hoses — which also reduces the risk of damage. The compact unit is resistant to dirt, blows and uprising material. The internal oil feed-through eliminates external hose connections, protecting the drive unit against leaks or hose ruptures. Contractors also can use the system for underwater applications due to its waterproof design that features no greasing points or short hoses, with no loss of oil for contaminate-free working.

Read more: Kinshofer’s New HPXdrive System Provides Improved Closing Force, Longer Lifecycle

IMT enhances hydraulic loader crane lineup

Iowa Mold Tooling Co, part of Oshkosh Corporation, recently introduced its 42684 hydraulic loader, the newest addition to the company’s lineup of loader cranes.

“Our newest hydraulic loader crane offers customers another option for precise handling and expert maneuverability of palletized materials in the building supply construction industries,” said John Field, product manager at IMT.

“IMT designs our loaders to lift more, reach farther and last longer.”

The 42684 features the highest rating in the IMT lineup at 305,580 foot-pounds. It has a maximum lift capacity of 10,500 lbs. (4763 kilograms), up to 84 feet of horizontal reach and a maximum vertical reach of 95 feet.

A hydraulic out-and-down stabilizer span provides stability for loading and unloading palletized goods, while a high lift-to-weight ratio allows for maximum payload on the truck.

“At IMT, we’re committed to helping our customers achieve improved productivity, profitability and efficiency with our products,” Field said. “The new 42684 provides the strength, reach and precision to quickly and easily load and unload materials.

“The 42684 offers the longest and highest lift capacity of any IMT loader crane currently in the market.”

IMT hydraulic loaders are manufactured with an Environmentally-Friendly Quality Coating (EQC) Surface Treatment that provides resistance to impact and corrosion for improved lifetime productivity. The 42684 comes optional with an Electronic Vehicle Stability (EVS) system to increase the working area of the crane by calculating improved stability conditions and is backed by a three-year warranty on all IMT crane structural parts.

Read more: IMT enhances hydraulic loader crane lineup

Hydraulic Motors Transmit High Torque for Machine Motion

Whether heavy equipment needs rotational motion for several operations or only one, hydraulic motors often make sense because they can generate high torque from a compact package. But the ease of controlling speed, torque, and direction using simple hydraulic valves makes hydraulic motors versatile, as well.

This report explores examples of different that machines that capitalize on the many advantages of hydraulics to make them leaders within their respective fields.

Hydrostatic Vibration Enhances Compaction
There’s more to surface compactors than what meets the eye. They appear to have a large, heavy drum that rolls across the surface of loose soil or fresh asphalt to compress it down into a flat surface. But that’s not all: They also contain a vibration mechanism that drives an eccentric weight to use force from angular acceleration to apply additional downward force.

The principal works much like compacting soil with your feet. If you stand or walk slowly on loose soil, you’ll compact it with your body’s weight. But if you jump, and stomp on the soil with your feet as you land, the combined force from your weight and leg action will produce much more effective compaction than your weight alone.

In the Model CS56 soil compactor from Caterpillar Paving Products, force from angular acceleration is produced by a hydraulic motor driving a pair of eccentric weights inside the drum. It uses a 30-Hz, dual-amplitude vibratory system to help it deliver optimum compacting force. Changeable from the operator’s station, either of two vibratory amplitudes can be selected to best match the soil characteristics. Centrifugal force in high amplitude is 28,000 lb and drops to 13,800 lb in low amplitude. These medium-duty soil compactors with 66-in. wide drums have estimated production rates up to 500 cubic yards per hour.

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Pumps for the New Millennium

One of the realities of fluid power is that more of it is being monitored and controlled by electronics. Two broad methods of control exist for hydraulics technology: valve control and pump control. In this context, the valve and the pump are the elements that connect the controlling electronics to the hydraulic system.

Factors too numerous to mention make electronics the control medium of choice, but one that must be reckoned with is the rush to electrify the world with communication buses and wireless communications—most recently wi-fi and smartphones. The ability of inanimate devices to freely communicate with one another is so compelling, and the advantages so enormous, that this juggernaut cannot be stopped.

Read more: Pumps for the New Millennium

Global Aircraft Hydraulic System Market 2018 United Technologies Corporation, Parker Hannifin Corporation, Safran S.A.

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Read more: Global Aircraft Hydraulic System Market 2018 United Technologies Corporation, Parker Hannifin Corporation, Safran S.A.

 

Are 80% of Hydraulic Failures Really Caused by Contamination?

I know I’ve written it dozens of times, and I’ve seen it written even more in countless documents and heard it mentioned in technical presentations: Roughly 80% of all hydraulic equipment failures are caused by contamination. But where did this “fact” originate, and when? Who conducted the “study,” and how were data collected?

First of all, I’m not questioning the validity of the statement. It makes sense that contamination in hydraulic systems causes most malfunctions and failures. If we consider contamination to be anything in the hydraulic fluid that shouldn’t be there, then dirt, water, rust, air, and wear debris from pumps, seals, and other moving parts are all culprits. But 80% is a lot. That’s four failures out of five. What about improper installation (including the wrong component), poor system design, excessive heat, and equipment abuse? Collectively, shouldn’t all these come to more than 20%? Nope, 80% is what we see most the time—although sometimes people offer a slightly more conservative figure, such as more than 70%.

We often read about how those working in hydraulics don’t receive adequate training. Hydraulics isn’t taught in most mainstream schools, so many mechanics and technicians are forced to learn on the job. It seems as if a lack of training would be a significant source of equipment failures. This is backed up by our “Troubleshooting Challenge” column. Most of the equipment failures author Bob Sheaf writes about are attributed to a cause other than contamination. So, shouldn’t lack of training itself exceed 20%? Not if contamination accounts for 80% of failures.

This topic warrants discussion, so after checking with some hydraulics experts I’’ve known for decades, we concluded that the 80% figure seems to have come about in the early 1980s, maybe earlier. So, for sake of discussion, let’s say it was first used in the early 1980s. A lot has happened in hydraulics since then, so even if 80% was dead-on 30 or 40 years ago, is it still a good number?

Read more: Are 80% of Hydraulic Failures Really Caused by Contamination?