Mary Gannon at Fluid Power World talks through the upcoming IFPE
Although many economists have warned of a softening in the fluid power market, so far that softening has been just that — soft. According to the NFPA, the 12-month moving average of shipments for pneumatics, hydraulics, and total fluid power continue to grow. The year-to-date percent change for total fluid power shipments in December 2022 is 16.6%, down from 16.9% in November. As most experts predicted, the drop is minimal so far and our industry is still strong.
Despite inflation, threats of recession, and question marks on jobs, IFPE and CONEXPO-CON/AGG are shaping up to be the biggest iterations of these shows yet.
But just big doesn’t necessarily mean better. What will be a key indicator of the health of our industry will be in the innovations one can expect to see there — major OEMs and small, niche component manufacturers’ takes on electrification, digitalization, and sustainability are all leading to reshape fluid power for the better.
Already, we’ve learned about:
- Danfoss’ Dextreme system, which is based on its Digital Displacement technology. It provides a pathway to 50% energy savings by tackling losses in the whole excavator hydraulic system.
- Hallite’s new products, featuring renewable or recyclable raw materials that have been tested to reduce environmental impact without compromising quality and performance.
- Volvo’s commitment to being fossil-free by 2040. Volvo will be highlighting its range of commercially available electric machines, related charging infrastructure, and sustainable power alternatives. Key here will be a redevelopment of the hydraulics on some of its electrified machinery to increase hydraulic efficiency and battery power.
- Elobau will highlights its new plug-and-play safety tested system with its 225MA midi armrest. It was designed with sustainability in mind, as 75% of the plastics used are bio-based materials made from castor oil (instead of petroleum).
- Bosch Rexroth will showcase a wide variety of technologies suited for mobile equipment, including the eLION electrification platform.
- Caterpillar will highlight its four new electric machines as well as prototype batteries.