Next-Generation Electrohydraulic Controls for Off-Road Machines.

Mobile Hydraulic – Integrated hardware and software replace traditional mobile-hydraulic control systems. 

FluidPower World August 2017  Ken Korane Contributing editor

Today’s mobile-equipment manufacturers, for the most part, face a number of common challenges. OEMs want to streamline engineering and production processes yet build machines that are highly efficient, reliable and productive. And, increasingly, their customers want to monitor and track how these products operate—to ensure they live up to expectations and generate a healthy ROI.

To support those goals, Parker Hannifin, with headquarters in Cleveland, recently upgraded its range of mobile-equipment controls with IQAN Connect, an electrohydraulic motion-control platform that bridges machines to the IoT world. According to the company, IQAN Connect dramatically reduces development time, optimizes equipment performance and gives OEMs and fleet managers a better handle on how machines are actually used.

IQAN Connect, explained Johan Liden, IQAN product manager at Parker’s Electronic Controls Division, is a seamless “digital ecosystem.” that ties together the hydraulics and electronic-control hardware and software inside a machine but also, via the Internet, provides access to the cloud for remote monitoring and asset management.

“One way to look at IQAN is in terms of the whole initiative around IoT as it pertains to electro-hydraulics in the control space,” said Robert Lorance, strategic business development manager. It focuses on three areas. First, the platform relies on “intelligent.” components with onboard electronics and sensors that communicate with each other and with higher-level systems via a standard SAE J1939 CAN-bus, he explained.

“Second, our IQANdesign tools offer the next generation of control software with lots of functionality and are easy to use,” Lorance continued. “And third is our connectivity initiative around how we take data, get it to the cloud and then begin the process of moving from information to insight.” Equipment builders and operators can use that information to benchmark machine performance and output—and ultimately leverage that knowledge to improve productivity, reliability, efficiency and overall economics, he said. Here’s a look at some IQAN Connect highlights.


Building hydraulic-control systems with drag-and-drop ease

The time it takes to engineer a machine and get it to market is one of the most important contributors to an OEM’s return on investment. It is primarily determined by design time, application programming, simulation, testing and creating all the necessary documentation. IQANdesign software, a key part of the IQAN Connect system, reportedly streamlines that process to significantly reduce engineering time and expense.

The latest version, IQANdesign 5, is a high-level graphical design tool that simplifies control-system application development for mobile machines, explained Johan Liden, IQAN product manager. Five different sections let engineers define a machine’s control system, specify application logic, and set up diagnostics, user interfaces, and system security, he said.

Typically, they first select appropriate modules from a database in the IQAN Connect library. These represent hydraulic components, engines, gearboxes, electronic hardware and diagnostic interfaces like Bluetooth adapters and modems. Users drag-and-drop the modules to configure the system and then connect them with a suitable CAN-bus. Control modules serve as a standalone controller or CAN-bus master, and a gateway module sends data to the cloud.

Smart components

“Parker engineers have developed an extensive suite of IQAN-compatible products over the past 20 years. It includes hydraulic components like mobile pumps, valves, motors, cylinders, and accumulators, as well as electronic hardware like operator displays, joysticks, cameras and IoT gateways.” In addition, a family of high-performance controllers provides precise, real-time management of mobile electrohydraulic systems. They support tasks that demand high levels of computing capacity as well as functional safety applications.

The components all run on customizable IQAN software and standard J1939 communication networks for straightforward system integration, resulting in complete machine control and asset management.

Read full article here in the August 2017 issue of Fluid Power World

About Parker: Parker Hannifin is a Fortune 250 global leader in motion and control technologies. For 100 years the company has engineered the success of its customers in a wide range of diversified industrial and aerospace markets. GS Global Resources’ is proud to be a solid partner combining engineering expertise along with a broad range of core technologies positioning to help solve the world’ greatest engineering challenges.