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Green power-split transmissions in focus at Bauma

The technologies behind the next generation of eco-friendly earthmovers — including an optimised diesel engine, a power-split transmission system, displacement-controlled working hydraulics and a hydrostatic hybrid drive chain — will be examined at a Research Initiative presentation at the Bauma trade fair to be held in Munich in April.

These innovations have been developed by the TEAM project (the acronym is from the German for ‘development of technologies for energy-saving transmission systems in mobile machinery’), which involves 18 machinery manufacturers and suppliers, including Caterpillar, Danfoss, Deutz, Hydrive and Liebherr, five university institutes and the VDMA (German Engineering Federation).

The culmination of the TEAM work thus far was the presentation late last year of a ‘green wheel loader’ which combines all of the tech mentioned above.

The construction machinery industry has reduced emissions of nitric oxide and diesel particulates from its products by more than 95 percent since the European Parliament issued its Exhaust Emissions Directive in 1999.

“These days construction machines decide for themselves what is most economical in a particular work process: to transfer the power to the wheels mechanically or hydraulically,” says Joachim Schmid, managing director of the VDMA’s Construction Machinery and Building Materials Machinery Association.

“The drive chain delivers only as much power as is needed, energy is stored and delivered as required. And for years the eco mode has been standard in many types of machinery.”

Despite this, the TEAM team says it’s essential to keep improving. The green wheel loader, for example, is over ten percent more fuel-efficient in practical operation than a current-series machine.

Special power-split transmissions are definitely gaining ground in wheeled loaders, says Professor Marcus Geimer, the Mobile Machinery chair at the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology.

“In a wide variety of operations, these transmission systems deliver improved efficiency as compared to hydrostatic transmissions or switchable converter drives,” he says.

Bauma takes place from 11-17 April 2016 at the Messe München exhibition centre. Click here for more information.


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