March 31; “Advanced Coatings for Fluid Power Components and Systems”

“The Advantages of using Nitro-Steel® and the FNC Process”  
Arnold Johnson, Controller and interim PGM, Gerdau & Lew Fortune, PGM, Gerdau Atmosphere Annealing  

Nitrocarburized FNC-treated steel rods as well as having steel parts treated via FNC processing. Also included, is an overview of how the process works.

“Nanostructured Coatings for Wear and Resistance”
Dr. Gary Doll, Professor University of Akron and Chief Technology Officer Akron Surface Technologies, Inc.  

The ability to tailor coatings on the micro- and nanoscale has enabled the development of coatings that provide high levels of wear and corrosion resistance to metallic substrates. Although nanostructured coatings can be deposited by various means, this presentation will focus on coatings deposited by three different processes: closed-field unbalanced magnetron sputtering, pulsed reverse current electrodeposition and thermal reactive deposition.   

“Surface Engineering at Nano-Coatings, Inc. and the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology”
Dr. Frank Kustas Chief Technology Officer Nano-Coatings, Inc. and Senior Research Scientist SDSM&T AMP Lab  

Surface engineering capabilities at Nano-Coatings, Inc., and SDSM&T in Rapid City SD, span a wide range of coating thickness from the nanometer (magnetron-sputtering, physical vapor deposition) to centimeter (cold-spray) scale. Both line-of-sight deposition as well as immersion-conversion technology (e.g., high-voltage plasma electrolytic oxidation) for complex shapes are being developed. Coatings are being investigated for friction/wear reduction, corrosion-resistance, biomedical compatibility, and water/ice repellency, among other applications. Recent developments in our laboratory for wear and corrosion-resistant coatings will be presented.

June 2; “Advanced and Additive Manufacturing for Fluid Power Components and Systems”

“How to Use Advanced Software and 3D Printing to Create High Quality Castings for the Fluid Power Industry
Terry Senish, Director of Technology Applications, ExOne Americas

This was a presentation with a lot of practical application for fluid power manufacturers, some of whom are beginning to find value in the 3D printing of fixtures and castings for the traditional production of their parts. Terry told us that ExOne’s additive processes create cores and castings that can cast all the metals that are used construct standard fluid power components.

“Additive Manufacturing: Transitioning from Prototyping to Production”
Ankit Saharan, Senior Applications Developer, EOS North America  

This presentation was more forward-looking for the fluid power industry, assessing the state-of-the-art of current additive technologies and their possible application to the direct printing of fluid power components. Ankit’s firm works with many different industries to create 3D-printed parts, but they haven’t yet worked with a fluid power manufacturer. In the discussion that followed, it was agreed that a real opportunity existed to start printing some fluid power prototypes, and then use the testing labs and facilities at MSOE to validate the material strengths and properties of the resulting parts.    

“Integrated Manufacturing Solutions”
Michael Reader, Owner and CEO Precision Plus  

Leverage your supply chains for the most cost effective single source solutions. This only happens with true collaboration between you and your supplier. Mike will discuss the processes used at Precision Plus to accomplish this goal with their current customers. Mike spoke to the group about some of the outreach and workforce development programs he has led at his company, a manufacturer of precision turned parts for the fluid power and several other industries. His partnership with his local technical college and the many internship positions he offers to high school students is a model for other members to follow.

September 8; “Advanced Hydraulic Fluids for Enhancing System Efficiency”

“Hydraulic Fluid Technologies for Enhanced Efficiency, Productivity, and Fuel Economy”
Paul Michael, Research Chemist, MSOE Fluid Power Institute  

This presentation was a great primer on the subject of energy efficient hydraulic fluids. What are they, how do they work, what kind of enhancements can they offer, and why is it so challenging to formulate them? Paul has been working in hydraulic fluids for more than 30 years, and no one presents a more accessible introduction on the subject.    

“Energy Efficient Hydraulic Fluids: Case Studies in Mobile and Stationary Equipment”
Sravani Gullapalli, Project Lead, Hydraulics, Shell Global Solutions  

This presentation persuasively makes the case for energy efficient hydraulic fluids because they produce energy and productivity gains without changing system architectures or components. Just replace the fluid in an existing machine, and the benefits follows. Several compelling case studies are cited, showing 5-10% savings in energy consumed and similar percentage gains in machine productivity.  

“Polymer-Based Fluids for Enhanced Hydraulic System Efficiency”
David Gray, North American OEM Manager, Evonik Oil Additives  

This presentation includes more case studies, showing 5-10% savings in energy consumed and 15-20% gains in machine productivity. David made the point that a variety of different chemistries can make gains like these possible, but that they all work on the same principle – an oil that stays thin at cold temperatures and thick at hot temperatures.

December 1; “Advanced High Strength Composites for Fluid Power Applications”  

“Opportunities for Composites in Fluid Power”
Andy Hessler, Owner, Brokkr Technologies, Inc.  

Composites provide a variety of advantages over traditional metal components in pumps and valves. This is due to their light-weight nature, great tribological properties, chemical inertness and the vast array of manufacturing process that can be applied to them. Gears, fittings, bushings and end caps are some of the examples that will be presented. In each case the economic and physical performance of the composites will be compared and contrasted with the parts made of traditional materials. It is hoped that new ways of solving old problems will come to light through this presentation.  

Practical Research Methods for the Development of Composites for Hydraulic Cylinder Applications
Tim Girardi, Applications Engineer, System Seals  

Composite materials, such as polyester, are found in various components of hydraulic cylinders, but their primary application is for use as guidance and load bearing elements. In recent years, improvements have been made in composites in the areas of wear, friction, and load carrying ability. Such improvements result in reduction of metal-to-metal failures, extension of seal life, and the reduction of fluid loss through even seal wear. Additionally, advancements in computer aided design and optimization algorithms are used to reduce guide bearing component size, resulting in reduction of cylinder size and cost, and in some cases, the replacement of bronze guidance due to better stress distribution. This presentation explores the comparative testing, research, and simulation, which has led to such improvements with some case studies to follow.      

“Lightweight Composite Pressure Vessel Design & Manufacture – A Case Study of Composites in Fluid Power Applications”
Mike Stewart, Product Development Manager, Steelhead Composites  

Advanced composite materials offer benefits to certain fluid power applications, especially mobile applications where weight savings can be critical. The presentation will address considerations specific to the use of composite materials in fluid power applications, including designing for decreased weight, challenges faced for modeling and analysis, considerations of incorporating multiple materials in close proximity, enhancing robustness and performance and pathways to control costs. Specifics regarding manufacturing, handling, and damage tolerance of composite pressure vessels will also be discussed.