Fluid Power Journal

Watts It All About

Watts It All About with Dan Helgerson

Welcome to a fluid power blog focusing on best practices, energy efficiency, and safety. The goal is to stimulate (not simulate) thinking, share knowledge, and promote professionalism. We welcome your comments as we share ideas, yours and mine.

Dan-HelgersonDan Helgerson, CFPAI, CFPS, sits on the International Fluid Power Society Board of Directors as treasurer and is the technical editor for Fluid Power Journal. He can be reached at Dan@DanHelgerson.com

Visit his website at www.DanHelgerson.com

System Integrators Energy Challenge: Follow Up

There are some prerequisites for reading this article: you need to read last month’s article entitled “System Integrators: An Energy Challenge,” you need to have your calculator handy, and you probably ought to have your Lightning Reference Handbook at your fingertips (available at www.ifps.org) because this article is going to examine the thought process used […]

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System Integrators: An Energy Challenge

I have to admit that I am a little bit skeptical. Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that system integrators don’t know anything about saving energy. In fact, I am convinced that they may be, and certainly ought to be, the most qualified to inject energy-saving concepts into the design and implementation of […]

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Reducing Pressure: A Way to Save or Waste Energy?

If you are a pneumatics person, you will be thinking of a pressure regulator; the hydraulic people among us will be thinking of pressure-reducing valves. In concept, the two controls are similar, but the way they affect the energy requirements is quite different. In hydraulics, the pressure-reducing valve is an energy waster; in pneumatics, it […]

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Efficient Hydraulic Systems

I think I may have a surprise for you. We will look at a system and try three different hydraulic systems and see which is best from an energy perspective. The requirements are these: a hydraulic pump needs to supply either 17 or 20 gpm at either 1,750 or 2,100 psi to do some work. […]

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Outside the Box

I’ve got an idea. Tell me what you think. You have an application where you need to store 20 liters of hydraulic fluid to be used at 120 bar. You know that using a conventional accumulator will do it but it is not the most efficient way. The minimum pressure in the accumulator will have […]

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Accumulators: Energy Savers/Energy Wasters

It looks like the next few articles will be about some specific components and how they can be best utilized in a circuit for maximum energy savings. Previous articles have laid the foundation for understanding the need for efficient systems both in terms of fluid power and electricity. We will build on that knowledge as […]

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Power Factor…An Opportunity

I know, I know, you’re tired of having to think about energy, and you can’t find your calculator. We’ve covered a lot of bad news about our fluid power systems, and you’re feeling discouraged. Well, I have some good news! What we just learned about power factor can provide an excellent and relatively untapped opportunity to […]

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Power Factor

For the purpose of this article, I would like you to divide yourselves into two groups: the “Energy Suppliers” and the “Energy Consumers.” While you are deciding which group you want to be in, I will give some introductory comments. Oh, and you should still have your calculators handy from the last article. A country […]

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Flow Control: If In Doubt, Think About…Energy

I see some of you forgot to bring your calculators with you. We’ll wait right here and chat a bit while you go fetch your equipment… I stated in my first article, “Focus on Energy,” that I could have lifted a load that required 25 hp using only 12 hp and that I would discuss […]

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Flow Controls: If in Doubt…

Ok, let me see a show of hands. How many of you have designed or installed fluid power systems that used flow controls? Keep them up so I can count… It looks like about 99%. Let me ask another question. How many of you thought about the fact that using a flow control wasted energy? […]

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