Fluid Power Journal

As IFPE Opens, Fluid Power Rolls the Dice

IFPE 2023The International Fluid Power Exhibition, the leading trade show for the fluid power industry, opens today and runs through Saturday at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

IFPE exhibitors display new technologies and products, share knowledge, network, and buy equipment. Industry stakeholders encounter the innovations and insights that equip fluid power engineers and manufacturers for the never-ending quest to increase efficiency, contain costs, and improve the performance of their hydraulic and pneumatic applications.

More than 375 exhibitors showcase the latest innovations in fluid power, power transmission, and motion control. Attendees have access to 170 education sessions and workshops providing professional development hours. IFPE also provides numerous networking opportunities for attendees and exhibitors. One of the most popular is the Fluid Power Hour, which happens Wednesday 4-6 p.m. on the IFPE show floor. 

The IFPE exhibit hall hours Tuesday through Friday are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday hours are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

For more information, visit www.ifpe.com/.

Bosch Rexroth Highlights Mobile Hydraulic Architecture 

MH22001 Rexroth eOC Electronic Open Circuit

In its IFPE exhibit, Bosch Rexroth, one of fluid power’s largest players, highlights its hydraulic architecture for mobile machines, eOC – electronic Open Circuit.

Manufacturers of mobile machines must decide whether to control their pumps using pressure, torque or the swivel angle – and must compromise as a result. The same applies to numerous other parameters which are defined once for the hardware and continue throughout the machine’s service life. The new electrohydraulic solution from Bosch Rexroth solves this problem by moving control functions from the hydromechanical controller to the software. This makes machines even more versatile and flexible. In addition, machines benefit from increased productivity and lower energy consumption.

The electrohydraulic eOC pump with swivel angle sensor and pressure sensors is the central component in the eOC architecture. It ensures the proper control of the necessary setpoint values for torque, pressure, or flow. The pump provides highly dynamic control with millisecond accuracy to modulate the pressure. In combination with the eOC software, characteristics such as dynamics and power control can be set, changed and combined. 

Controlled via a CAN interface, the eOC software makes it possible to set various control parameters flexibly during operation. With hydromechanical control functions and interfaces moved to the software, control modes can be individually changed and combined during operation and the pump dynamics can be set variably. Pressure, torque, flow, and the swivel angle are controlled independently of each other in an electronically closed control circuit. With predefined parameters, the pump behaves optimally as part of the hydraulic system regardless of function. Via the CAN bus interface, setpoint values and parameters can also be adjusted dynamically to allow additional functions and to adapt machines to meet specific customer requirements and complete various work tasks.

The eOC software can be installed on a Rexroth BODAS controller or a controller from a third-party manufacturer. It constantly adapts the hydraulic power to the available engine torque and thus allows dynamic, precise work functions, which ultimately increase the overall productivity of the working machine. The energy consumption of the entire hydraulic system is optimized, resulting in lower fuel consumption or better battery use. 

Mass-produced machines already benefit from the new hydraulic architecture. They include a compact excavator that entered mass production in the first half of 2021. A power mode for demanding excavation work was developed for this purpose. This operating mode allows maximum pressure and torque as well as maximum pressure gradient dynamics, for example when emptying the shovel. The machine also has a fine mode allowing jerk-free, smooth operation, in applications such as laying pipes.

The eOC architecture is also ideal for use in wheeled excavators. In the past, numerous valves were needed to adjust the power in these multifunctional machines to suit the particular task. The switchover to the eOC architecture significantly reduces the hardware outlay, minimizes costs and avoids potential sources of error in valve switching. 

As a scalable solution, the Rexroth eOC portfolio allows step-by-step implementation – from the electrohydraulic eOC pump with swivel angle sensor and pressure sensors to the option to cover the entire hydraulic system. An eOC main control block and an electric joystick are provided for this. 

Bosch Rexroth has now upgraded a wide range of axial piston pumps and added numerous new functions to the existing basic concept. For example, the eOC architecture now allows the dynamic control of pressure, swivel angle and torque gradients. This means that the pump not only reaches a specific target value – the pressure gradients that are needed to achieve this pressure are also determined. This allows much smoother and gentler motion, especially at the start of a movement. 

Auto-calibration, where the component is calibrated within the machine itself, is another new eOC function. Calibration therefore no longer takes place statically at the OEM’s end of production line – it is instead carried out cyclically while the machine is operating. The eOC software records specific calibration data every time the machine starts. Other data is recorded whenever the machine’s operating conditions allows. In this case, up-to-date data – which take into account aging effects or temperature differences, for example – are recorded and the parameters are automatically adjusted. This increases the reproducibility of behavior, full use is made of pump power at all times and the pump status information for further processing on the machine level is as precise as possible. 

For more information, click here and visit www.boschrexroth-us.com.

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