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Next-generation motion control

Norrhydro has been making hydraulic cylinders for over 25 years. Current capacity stands at around 130,000 units a year, covering everything from ships’ bow visors and jet ski steering servos to mobile crushers and mining machinery. Its next-generation motion control technology, known as NorrDigi™, promises to save up to 80% in energy consumption.

Norrhydro hydraulic cylinders are used around the world in a wide variety of mobile, marine, and industrial applications – and are built to withstand tough use, such as highly repetitive routines, heavy loads, and extreme conditions.

Many leading manufacturers of heavy-duty machinery rely on the strength and durability of Norrhydro’s hydraulic cylinders for forest machinery, container and material handling equipment, rammers, mobile crushers, mining drills, and agricultural machinery. Large numbers of paper machines, sawmill equipment, and mining systems also depend on norrhydro products. The ability of the company’s cylinders to withstand corrosive marine conditions has seen them widely used in ship-board cranes, steering gear, hatches, and propulsion systems as well.

A win-win revolution

Norrhydro has now taken a major step forward with the launch of its NorrDigi™ technology. Unlike traditional hydraulic systems, this provides precise motion control without the need to constantly throttle and waste energy in the process. Not only does throttling result in higher fuel costs, it also means that machinery needs to be fitted with heavy and expensive cooling systems.

Thanks to its use of multi-chamber cylinders and intelligent digital control, NorrDigi™ technology only delivers the power required at any given moment. whether lifting or lowering a load, it always optimises the force needed, minimising the amount of energy used.

With up to four times more efficient power management and less heat loss than conventional systems, NorrDigi™ technology requires smaller prime movers and coolers. It also eliminates the need for most of today’s emission reduction technology, which can be expensive and difficult to integrate into a machine’s design.

Everybody wins. Manufacturers benefit because NorrDigi™ enables them to reduce the design complexity of their machinery, its gross weight, and manufacturing costs. Operators benefit too, as they can reduce their fuel consumption and cooling capacity while still complying with emission regulations, and improve the overall utilisation of their equipment.

The potential of NorrDigi™ can be appreciated when you realise that replacing all the hydraulic systems in current machinery with it could save the equivalent of the output of 500 medium-sized power stations.

NorrDigi™ system

  • Multiple area-coded cylinder chambers
  • Discretely variable piston area
  • Multiple supply pressures
  • Load adaptability and controllability
  • Simple, reliable digital valves that are easy to replace
  • Individual actuator control
  • No vibration
  • Up to 80% less energy consumption.

Conventional hydraulic systems

  • One or two cylinder chambers
  • Load compensators
  • Load control valves
  • Static piston areas
  • Engine required to deliver maximum pressure even when it is not needed.
> Yrjö Trög
(Published in HighTech Finland 2011)