13 Things You Should Know About Hydraulic Power Pack
Here are 13 things you should know about Hydraulic Power Pack.
1.By definition, hydraulic power packs are self-contained power-units used instead of a built-in power supply, to transmit power from one location to another and thus run your rubber machinery. A hydraulic system employs enclosed fluid to transfer energy from one source to another, and subsequently create rotary motion, linear motion, or force.
2. Hydraulic power packs come in different shapes and sizes; some are very large and stationary whereas others are smaller and compact. The mechanical characteristics and specifications of a hydraulic power pack dictate the type of applications for which it can be effective.
3. You can identify hydraulic power packs through its main components. Because irrespective of the size of the unit, all power packs will have the following;
- A hydraulic reservoir (or tank) which holds the enclosed oil. This is a storage unit designed with enough volume for the oil in the pipes to drain into it. They also ensure this oil is stored and maintained in the best possible condition. Reservoirs will come in different sizes. Common auxiliaries for a reservoir include filler/breathers and drain ports, level gauge, level switches and inspection covers.
- Regulators that control and maintain the amount of pressure that the hydraulic power pack delivers. These are very vital.
- Pressure Supply lines and Relief lines. The supply line supplies fluid under pressure to the pump and the relief lines relieve pressure between the pump and the valves. The relief lines also control the direction of flow through the system.
- Motor to power a pump
- A pump to perform two actions. Firstly, it creates a vacuum at the pump inlet and with the help of atmospheric pressure, forces fluid from the reservoir into the inlet line. This fluid is then fed to the pump. The pump then delivers this fluid to the pump outlet and force feeds it into the hydraulic system.
4. Some of the important factors that influence a hydraulic power unit’s performance are pressure limits, power capacity, and reservoir volume. In addition, its physical characteristics including size, power supply, and pumping strength are also significant considerations. Reputed suppliers take great care to ensure that a large, durable hydraulic power unit is built for functioning under a range of environmental conditions.
5. Hydraulic power packs have other components like
- Filters: Filtration is a critical part of a hydraulic power pack, ensuring wear is minimised and efficiencies are maintained. Basic suction strainers do not allow large contaminants to enter the pump. Pressure filters are normally configured at the pump outlet and ensure only filtered oil enters the hydraulic system. Contamination within the system is filtered out by the return filter before it enters the hydraulic reservoir.
- Pressure Control valves that limit or control the hydraulic pressure within the hydraulic system.
- Directional Control hydraulic valves (manual, electrical, pneumatic or hydraulic operated) direct the oil flow around the system to operate actuators, motors or other functions.
- Cooling is another other key consideration, where efficiencies within a system or machine will produce heat in the oil; this must be cooled to ensure long life and high-efficiency.
- Accumulators: These are containers that can be attached to the hydraulic actuators. They collect oil from the pump and are intended to build and maintain fluid pressure to supplement the motor pumping system.
- Coolers and Heaters: As part of the temperature regulation process, an air cooler can be installed near or behind the filter unit to prevent temperatures from rising above operational parameters. Likewise, a heating system, such as an oil-based heater, can be used to elevate temperatures when necessary.
- Power Unit Controllers: The hydraulic controller unit is the operator interface containing power switches, displays, and monitoring features. It is necessary for installing and integrating a power unit into a hydraulic systems, and can usually be found wired into the power unit. Oil level and temperature protection switch, Pressure switches and filter clogging switches are quite common.
6. Hydraulic power packs come with a variety of valve connections. This means that you can power a variety of rubber and tyre machinery by using the appropriate valves. Most manufacturers segregate their models into a ‘standard’, ‘mini’, ‘micro’ or‘bespoke’ power pack categories.
7. When picking a hydraulic power pack there are a variety of pumps and options to pick from. Hence, it is important to pick the right power pack to meet your machines needs. It is also important to consider a power pack that will help maximise productivity and minimise cost.
8. In rubber and tyre machinery, you would need custom design of your hydraulic power packs depending on the features you select and how you select. For example, you could either opt for a single power pack for your drop door and hydraulic ram operations of a mixer; or choose separate power packs for individual operations depending on the circumstances at your plant.
9. Your supplier should review the pressure and flow data together with you. And they should also take load profiles and the thermal budget into account. Doing this ensures that you get a power pack that precisely meets your technical requirements and operates economically.
10. It is ideal if you or your machinery supplier get everything integrated from a single source. Because, fewer interfaces means your hydraulic system gets built faster. Your costs are lower, too.
11. Experts recommend use of high-efficiency low-noise internal gear pumps when designing power packs. Your supplier may consider accumulator charging technology or variable speed drives as may be the case for your application. Multiple pressure circuits are another option.
12. Hydraulic power packs require regular maintenance to ensure they work properly and safely for extended periods of use. Maintaining hydraulic power packs is relatively simple. You should check the tubing for any noticeable problems such as dents or cracks. You should also inspect the reservoir to check for any corrosion or rust. And do regularly change the hydraulic fluid as per recommended maintenance schedule of your hydraulic power pack.
13. Hydraulic power packs must be installed and mounted in a clean and dry location void of any standing water or accumulated run-off.
Summarizing, you should opt for a power pack that has low power consumption, requires very little installation space, and operates with low cooling requirements. This would mean that your operating costs are very low for the unit and it’s easy to integrate into your main machinery. All of these would help you procure power packs featuring high reliability and availability on the one hand, and easy and cost-effective integration into your rubber machinery on the other.
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Originally published at rubbermachineryworld.com on March 16, 2016.