Eaton Corp. has launched a new technology that enables reporting of imminent hose assembly failure by means of real-time monitoring of high pressure hose assemblies used in hydraulic systems. Eaton’s LifeSense hose, a patented hydraulic hose condition monitoring system, was developed in conjunction with Purdue University and the Purdue Research Foundation’s Office of Technology Commercialization to continuously monitor the health of hydraulic hose assemblies and alert users when an assembly approaches the end of its useful life.
The LifeSense hose can monitor and track the health of each hose assembly in a hydraulic system. This system does not estimate or predict through arithmetic calculations when a hose is going to fail, like some products on the market today. The LifeSense hose actually detects when a hose is nearing the end of its useful life. Then an alert is sent to the user so that the assembly can be replaced to prevent downtime. A single monitoring unit can handle input from multiple hose assemblies.
“Most hydraulic maintenance programs are designed to avoid hose failures by replacing assemblies at regular intervals, using a schedule based on usage data or past experience,” said Doug Jahnke, Eaton product marketing manager. “As a result, a large number of perfectly good hydraulic hose assemblies are discarded long before the end of their useful life out of fear that they might fail. The LifeSense hose allows the user to utilize virtually all of the useful life of a hydraulic hose assembly, more than 50% longer life in a typical lab test, thus saving on replacement costs and associated downtime while providing peace-of-mind that productivity will not be impeded and safety not compromised by unpredicted hose failure.”
“Additionally, hydraulic hose failure is one of the largest causes of unplanned maintenance events,” Jahnke said. “Hose failures in the field present serious safety issues, environmental concerns and result in unscheduled system downtime, all of which have serious economic impacts.”
The initial LifeSense hose offering will include the widely-used -8, -12 and -16 two-wire hose assemblies. Eaton’s LifeSense hydraulic hose condition monitoring offers performance equal to industry standard 2SN pressure-rated hose and is certified to the same industry specifications as conventional hydraulic hose products. The technology is currently available for trial with factory-made assemblies including straight JIC swivel fittings.