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DC/811 United Kingdom, 2018-05-18

Bosch Rexroth, the drive & control company, has pioneered a solution to boost efficiency and safety by decoupling the forklift driving strategy of diesel, electric or hybrid drives.

The new torque control interface system enables manufacturers to standardise their forklift handling characteristics with minimal effort. Its Power Manager electronically translates driver requests into appropriate power requests, which are converted in the hydrostatic drive. Throughout all of this, the electronification of hydrostatic travel helps to improve both energy efficiency and safety, through the addition of systems such as the HLB high-level brake.

Most logistics managers and end users need a mix of drive concepts for their forklift fleets – but a universal requirement for manufacturers is uniformity in driving characteristics, which reduces training needs, as well as risks and dangers during daily operation. Bosch Rexroth’s torque control and electronically controlled hydrostatic travel drive, however, decouples the engine characteristics from the driving strategy, striking a better balance between uniformity and customisation. The manufacturer needs only to parameterise the software to decouple drive physics from travel behaviour.

How does this work in practice? Conventional systems increase engine power as the accelerator pedal is pressed, often providing more power than needed. The new system instead interprets the pressing of the accelerator as the specification for the tractive force of the drive wheels. It then draws exactly the required power from the motor – a demand-oriented power request that significantly increases energy efficiency.

The electronification of the drive train also eases integration of features like the HLB. Through control software, HLB can completely replace wear-prone mechanical service brakes or hydraulic retarders, greatly reducing hydraulic complexity without needing additional components. More importantly, though, HLB brakes in both directions with the maximum possible deceleration – reducing tyre wear and dramatically improving safety.

Speaking about the launch, Deep Mukherjee, Product Support, Mobile Applications at Bosch Rexroth, said: “A major focus right now is the modularisation of electronics and software, and our new torque control interface system perfectly encapsulates this. We’ve designed it so that manufacturers no longer need to deal with optimising individual components and can instead focus on the vehicle’s behaviour to better implement the driving strategy – so everyone can benefit.”

The torque control interface system was launched at Hannover Messe – the world’s premier industrial automation event – as part of Bosch Rexroth’s ‘Factory of the Future’. Combining hardware and software in end-to-end Industry 4.0 solutions, this concept brings to life the company’s ambition of helping manufacturers thrive in a connected future.


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Lynsey Cutler
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