As we gear up for IFPE 2023 and all that comes with it, it’s good to know we’ll still be riding a positive wave throughout this year. 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 (just today as I write this, we’ve seen record numbers!) 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.
As these examples indicate, anyone who says that the fluid power industry is stagnant or dying is dead wrong. We at Fluid Power World are committed to helping move the industry forward as well, by providing access to informative, educational content in many formats. Stop by our booth in the South Hall Lobby, where you can:
- Meet the folks from CD Industrial/Lunchbox Sessions. Our popular and longtime contributor Carl Dyke will be on hand and will have his schematics running in our booth — to show you a better and more visual way to learn fluid power circuit troubleshooting and design.
- Get hands-on with the five winning product technologies from our LEAP (Leadership in Engineering Achievement Program) Awards. Samples of DGD Fluid Power’s Cartridge Flow Transmitter (CFT), Danfoss’ shhark low-noise gear pump, Webtec’s RFS200 Run-time Meter, Norgren’s Excelon Plus Integrated Electronic Pressure Sensor (IEPS), and Emerson’s AV/AES Valve System with integrated OPC UA, will be available in our booth for you to see why these technologies won the nods of our esteemed judges.
- Learn about our upcoming print and online content, including magazine issues, videos, online exclusives, and our NEW series of educational webinars slated for the Fall of this year.
Of course, I, Paul Heney, Rachael Pasini, and Ken Korane, as well as our video staff and publishing and sales team, will be on the show floor looking to connect with industry experts. Please stop by booth SL-80022 to say hello, talk shop, and learn more. We’re excited to discover all that will be new in fluid power in 2023 and beyond. More importantly, what we learn in Vegas, won’t stay in Vegas. You’ll see it all here on the pages and screens of Fluid Power World.
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