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Energy Efficient Variable Pressure Valve-Controlled Hydraulic Actuation

[+] Author Affiliations
Marco Scopesi

Politecnico di Torino, Turin, Italy

Andrew Plummer, Can Du

University of Bath, Bath, UK

Paper No. DSCC2011-5989, pp. 121-127; 7 pages
  • ASME 2011 Dynamic Systems and Control Conference and Bath/ASME Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control
  • ASME 2011 Dynamic Systems and Control Conference and Bath/ASME Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, Volume 1
  • Arlington, Virginia, USA, October 31–November 2, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: Dynamic Systems and Control Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5475-4
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


The subject of this paper is a VPVC (variable pressure valve-controlled) hydraulic actuation system, which is a hydraulic plant with variable supply pressure. The concept is similar to a load sensing system but it is implemented using an electronic controller, instead of a hydraulic one, and the flow is provided using a servo pump, instead of a variable displacement pump. The intention is to maintain a high dynamic response but substantially improve efficiency compared to a conventional system with fixed supply pressure. FPVC (fixed pressure valve-controlled) systems are unable to completely modulate the input energy due to the constant supply pressure. However, since the ability to control the energy flow is usually needed, a proportional valve for each actuator is used to dissipate the extra input energy. This leads to a simple but inefficient way to control, for example, the velocity of a piston. The idea of a VPVC system is that, instead of dissipating energy by throttling flow, it is better to generate less fluid power in the first place: this is achieved by adjusting the speed of the servo pump as well as the spool positions. In this paper, a controller for a VPVC system is presented along with numerical simulations showing a comparison with a fixed pressure system. Up to 70% energy saving is predicted.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME
Topics: Pressure , Valves



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