IFPE is back again in Las Vegas for 2017 with 3 years worth of new innovations in tow. Building on the success of the 2014 event, this triennial barn burner is expecting another full house this year.
By Mike Santora
Attendees from industries such as off-highway vehicles, construction, mining, forestry, agriculture, lawn and garden, and airport support vehicles will have access to 450+ exhibitors as well as a record 143 education sessions across 10 tracks. A new Technology track that complements the new 75,000-plus square foot interactive Tech Experience will also round out the education experience. This year’s show runs from Tuesday, March 7 through Saturday, March 11 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. No other show brings as many sectors of the fluid power, power transmission and motion control industries together in one place. Here’s our guide to navigating the show and maximizing your time.
In 1984, the National Fluid Power Association held its first Chicago-based fluid power show under the title International Fluid Power Exposition. Held every four years, that show periodically partnered with other events like Motion Expo and the International Welding and Fabrication Expo. By the year 2000, the NFPA no longer felt the title accurately reflected the scope of their event. The name was changed to “IFPE — International Exposition for Power Transmission” to better represent the integration of fluid power with electrical and mechanical components and systems. Two years later, IFPE also began co-locating with CONEXPO-CON/AGG, the largest international gathering place for the construction industries. The collaboration between the two shows ushered in two other large-scale changes as well: a move to Las Vegas and the show’s current three-year cycle.
Education — college courses
IFPE 2017 will be filled with educational opportunities. These education events provide crucial information on new fluid power, power transmission and motion control technologies to engineers and others involved in the design and manufacturing process. They provide hands-on technical knowledge for the effective use of hydraulics in mobile equipment. These half-day courses will benefit practicing engineers and others involved in the design and manufacturing processes. Additional costs apply.
Mon. March 6 | 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Fundamentals of Hydraulic Systems #CC1, Presented by Dr. Medhat Khalil, Director of Professional Education, MSOE
This presentation is made to increase the awareness of the audience about the fundamental concepts of fluid power technology. The presentation covers some rules of physics about fluid pressure and flow. The lecture then presents the generic structure of a hydraulic system in addition to construction and principle of operation of the main components, e.g. pumps, motors, valves, cylinders, and rotary actuators. The session concludes with details on how to combine all these components into a system that works safely and efficiently.
Mon. March 6 | 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Hydraulic Fluid Properties, Efficiency and Contamination Control #CC2, Presented by Paul Michael, Research Chemist, MSOE
In this seminar participants will learn about the composition of oils, the properties of lubricants and how hydraulic fluids can affect machine performance. Conventional, multigrade, synthetic and biodegradable fluids will be discussed. Research studies examining fluid efficiency effects in hydraulic motors and piston and gear pumps will be presented. The principles of oil analysis and filter selection will be outlined. The seminar concludes with case studies that demonstrate how filter debris analysis can be used to troubleshoot hydraulic system contamination control problems.
Tue. March 7 | 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Hydraulic System Design Strategies for Mobile Applications #CC3
This course is divided into 4 different topics.
• Developing Motion Control Training Strategies for Your Workforce: presented by Bogdan Kozul.
This presentation is made to explore the breadth of the motion control industry, identify technology trends and develop a strategy to fill the knowledge gap of stakeholders.
• Leveraging Internet of Things (IoT) in Mobile Hydraulics: presented by Art Donaldson.
This session will explore the impact of IoT, Internet of Things, intelligent components, and component connectivity on mobile hydraulics.
• Global ShieldTM Coating – Improved Corrosion Resistance for Critical Equipment: presented by Michael Sell.
This presentation is designed to provide an overview of Parker Hannifin’s Global Shield Coating.
• Electro-Hydrostatic Actuation – Highly Efficient Implement Solution with Energy Recovery: presented by Dale Vanderlaan.
This presentation will introduce Electro-Hydrostatic Actuation outlining basic operation, highlighting unique characteristics and comparing benefits with alternative approaches. A summary of test results from application experience will be included.
Tue. March 7 | 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Electrohydraulic, Systems Design and Control #CC4, Presented by Janette Kothe, Technical Sales Support Industry 4.0 and Michael Liedhegener, Simulation Group, Sales Technical Support, Bosch Rexroth
This course will take attendees along for a user journey presenting the potentials of state-of the art technologies such as electrohydraulic drives, simulation and IoT technologies.
Education – Energy Efficient Hydraulics and Pneumatics Conference
In addition, 23 courses will be offered Wednesday through Friday afternoons, highlighting opportunities to increase efficiency and productivity in hydraulic systems.
The conference kicks off with Chris Schottler, Engineering Manager, Advanced Technology, from Eaton Corp., whose keynote “Methodologies to Improve Energy Efficiency in Fluid Power” will review trends that are occurring in both mobile and industrial applications to improve system productivity and overall efficiency.
Additional keynotes will be presented each day. On Thursday Eric Bretey, Engineering Manager, Integrated Solutions at Danfoss Power Solutions, talks about “Innovative Application of Energy Efficient Fluid Power.”
On Friday Nic Copley, Vice President – Technology & Innovation, Parker Hannifin Corp.’s Automation Group, will present “Opportunities and Challenges in Making Human Assist Fluid Power Systems Part of the Coming Robot Revolution.”
The other 20 topics will cover electronics and electrohydraulics, ISO standards, pneumatics and compressed air systems, sensor technologies, glimpses into the future of soft robotics, noise and more. Visit IFPE.com for a complete schedule and full descriptions.
From solar-powered roadways to data visualization and interactivity, to the first-ever 3D printed excavator, drones, robotics, and intelligence advancements, the Tech Experience is a 75,000 square-foot immersive, future-forward showcase that lets attendees see what’s possible tomorrow and today. The Tech Experience is included in attendees Badge-Packs.
Hydraulic excavators are a mainstay at Conexpo. They come in countless versions and, while most are commercial products, sometimes OEMs also offer a glimpse of the future. At this year’s Conexpo, one machine of tomorrow that’s worth a look is the Additive Manufactured Excavator. It includes a 3D-printed steel boom with built-in hydraulic passages that eliminate hoses and improve cooling. It will also include a printed cooling system that will increase efficiency and reduce weight. The excavator will feature a futuristic cab designed by the student engineering team from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
The purpose of the excavator project is to demonstrate two emerging technologies: large-scale composite additive manufacturing and large-scale metal additive manufacturing. It is the first time steel is being used in 3D printing on such a large scale. This was done to prove that both metal and composite additive manufacturing have a place in the manufacture of construction equipment.
NFPA World Fluid Power Summit
The World Fluid Power Summit presented by the NFPA will be held on Thursday, March 9, beginning at 12:00, and will include lunch for all attendees. Industry and association leaders from more than a dozen countries—including Australia, Canada, China, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States—are expected to attend, with a representative from each country making a presentation on fluid power market trends in their home markets.
Additional presenters have also been invited, seeking engagement with the world fluid power community on important standardization initiatives and the growth of worldwide fluid power certification programs. The Summit is open to all interested participants, but seating will be limited, and advance registration is required. Visit NFPA.com for more details and to register.
Finally, IFPE and CONEXPO/CON-AGG is truly a global event, with international delegates from 30 countries, from Senegal to Argentina to Nepal. International visitors will have access to the show’s International Trade Center, language assistance, business matchmaking services, and an optional welcome briefing. Additionally, visitors can visit a variety of foreign pavilions, including the German Pavilion, Italian Pavilion, Korean Pavilion, and U.K. Pavilion, among others.