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Smart Cylinder: Breakthrough hydraulic solution to boost productivity, increase energy efficiency and lower emissions in heavy-duty industrial applications

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Smart Cylinder (Smart Cylinder: Breakthrough hydraulic solution to boost productivity, increase energy efficiency and lower emissions in heavy-duty industrial applications)

Reporting period: 2018-11-01 to 2019-02-28

Hydraulic systems are widely used in heavy-duty machines that demand more power for increasing its application range, but without sacrificing efficiency or profitability.
A hydraulic cylinder converts hydrostatic into mechanical energy. The bigger the forces needed the higher the pressures required, but high-pressure is expensive to implement. Moreover, as high-pressure systems are only required in specific components and during short periods of time, often result in power waste and oversized components.
Thanks to a pressure amplifier embedded in the cylinder, we have developed a new generation of high-power hydraulic cylinders (Smart Cylinders) capable to increase the pressure automatically whenever a higher force is needed, adapting performance to operating conditions without compromising size and costs.
After internal hydraulic and functional tests, Smart Cylinder prototypes have been implemented in demolition machinery, being tested on the field with good results. We now need to achieve technical and commercial market readiness to face large-scale production.
The requirements for Smart Cylinder are diverse in different applications and for different customers. Our market analysis has enabled us to detect the most promising sectors, being demolition our first target market. Then we will expand it to other sectors, starting with recycling and following with lifting and handling equipment. Every application has particular needs regarding power, speed, size and control, affecting the design of the internal pressure amplifier, that has to be modified to fulfil different requirements.
From the financial point of view, we have considered the risks and market barriers and made a SWOT analysis. We expect to sell more than 3,000 Smart Cylinder units during the fifth year of commercialisation, leading to a ROI around 4 and to the creation of more than 40 new jobs
Smart Cylinder provides higher forces, lower weight and faster operation. They are the first hydraulic cylinders in the market with internal pressure amplifier. The high pressure is automatically activated when required and, during normal working cycle, Smart Cylinders run at maximum pump flow, increasing work speed. As the extra power is available only when needed, the energy efficiency is much higher.
Thanks to the smaller dimension and lower weight, the design of the hydraulic systems is easier and the cost is reduced. Smart Cylinders are more reliable and safe as the high pressure is kept inside the cylinder and no high pressure hoses and connections are needed.