Developing hydraulic systems

Paul Boughton

Andreas Voss outlines the benefits of a piping solutions concept designed to save time and money in the development of hydraulic systems.

Developments in hydraulics are characterised by ever-increasing system pressures and safety requirements, by the sustained need to economise on installation, maintenance and operational costs and finally by the demand for compact, space-saving power units.

Against this backdrop, Parker Hannifin is now offering with its Complete Piping Solutions programme weldless flange connectors for the design of hydraulic systems. A comprehensive service and advisory package, offering great potential savings, rounds the range off. This enables customers worldwide to profit from extensive services from one source, starting with design advice and tubing pre-assembly through to delivery and installation. The time-consuming co-ordination of various supplier contacts is no longer required and procurement is simplified.

This concept became a reality with the Parker Complete Piping Solutions Center (CPS). The first centre of this kind in Germany is located in Augustdorf, near Bielefeld, close to Parker's European Logistics Centre. In this CPS Center large format tube assemblies and flange systems are developed, produced and connected to complete systems in an area of 1,500sqm.

Once released by the customer, the final design data are stored and subsequently can of course be immediately called up for follow-up orders. Then on modern CNC bending machines in the CPS Center, tube outside diameters up to 220mm are processed by cold forming. Depending on requirements, bending radii of 2 x D to 3 x D are achievable. The finished and cleaned tubing systems are assembled and subsequently delivered to the Parker European central store nearby for onward shipment. Delivery direct to the assembly point and final assembly, complete with line testing, are all part of the overall system performance, as well as washing and final acceptance of the tubing systems.

The Parflange F37 system is the core element of the Complete Piping Solutions concept. It was developed for tube lines from 16 up to 273mm (1/2 to 10 inches) outside diameter and is suitable for pressures up to 420bar. Depending on application, the tube connector itself is manufactured by means of flaring or retaining ring technology.

In comparison with classical welding, the special orbital flaring process needs considerably fewer operations. The basis of the system is the well-proven Parflange technology by means of which a high-strength flared connector with a rolled, compacted tube end surface is produced, positively locking the tubes with each other. Stress corrosion cracking cannot occur, thus prolonging the life of the tubing system.

Neither degreasers, anticorrosive agents nor subsequent tube cleaning are required. When galvanised tubing is being used, there is no need for post-galvanisation because the zinc layer is not affected by the flaring process. No harmful vapours occur during flaring or assembly and there is no risk of fire or explosion. This means that the technology can be applied also in workplaces with stringent safety regulations such as, for example, offshore platforms.

The Parflange 170 machine for absolutely smooth, fold-free flaring, is part of the Parflange F37 system. The remarkably short cycle time - only one to two minutes for total machining depending on tube quality - makes obvious the considerable productivity advance compared with welded piping systems.

Many different projects can be realised considerably more quickly with Parker's Complete Piping Solutions technology.

In the CPS Center customers utilise the expert knowledge of the resident systems engineers and technicians and thereby reduce their own design expenditure and ultimately increase their productivity. Without internal friction and co-ordination problems, machinery and plant builders' time is freed up for their own more important tasks. With its Complete Piping Solutions system, Parker makes available consistently high quality everywhere. In the meantime there are CPS Centers in the most important industrial concentrations around the world.

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Andreas Voss is with Parker Hannifin GmbH, Bielefeld, Germany.

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