Energy analysis of a hybrid electro-hydraulic system for efficient mobile hydraulics

D. Padovani*, M. Rundo, P. Fresia, G. Altare

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Energy efficiency plays a significant role in mobile hydraulics due to the high amount of carbon dioxide and pollutants being released into the atmosphere. Efficiency improvements are urgently needed, so the electrification of mobile hydraulics represents a fantastic opportunity in this regard. This approach leads to electro-hydraulic systems that remove functional flow throttling in control valves and enable energy recovery. Fuels savings were already demonstrated in simulation, but the literature does not offer entire energy analyses of these electro-hydraulic solutions. This limitation prevents complete system-level comprehension and does not give enough insight to pinpoint areas for further efficiency improvements. Thus, this paper focuses on a hybrid system for excavators based on electro-hydraulic drives that is compared against the original valve-controlled layout. The objective is to quantify the energy flows insight the excavator during relevant operations and highlight the resulting energy losses. The outcomes confirm that electro-hydraulic solutions are suitable for a low-carbon economy. They indicate hydraulic actuators, speed-controlled pumps, and electric motors as the critical components for further energy efficiency enhancement excluding the combustion engine.


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