Dynamic Machine Control. Empowered by Eaton.

Now there's a way for end users to dynamically manage ever-changing demands and conditions. To balance power generation with power consumption. To automate the many micro-decisions in a work circuit so that when the operator pushes a button or pulls a lever, the machine adapts and responds smoothly and efficiently.

Eaton is fundamentally changing the way people design, build and operate mobile and industrial machines. See how we're empowering not just better machine control, but dynamic machine control.

Explore any of the topics below and contact us if you would like to experience dynamic machine control in your business.

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The Case for Deep Integration

Paul Brenner, Chris Cole, and David Strohsack


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The term “integration” can take on a variety of meanings in industrial settings. To some, it means applying principles of systems engineering to manage multiple properties of a system as a whole. To others, it’s about achieving proper form factor – the size, shape, and other physical specifications of products.
In the world of fluid power, the term “deep integration” promotes thinking of a machine as a system and using a holistic approach to design. If integration generally means combining one thing with another, deep integration can be taken to mean combining multiple things together intelligently to work as a system. Deep integration, however, does not just mean bundling multiple components and linking them individually; it means enabling subsystems to communicate with other subsystems and help the machine to function more efficiently and precisely.


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Hiring the next generation of hydraulics engineers

Ben Hoxie


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As the hydraulics industry adapts to ever-changing product and machine design, we as an industry are counting on our engineers to continue developing better ways to bring more productive, more efficient machines to market and new ideas to the industry. Our hydraulics engineering manager, Ben Hoxie, goes over how Eaton sets up their engineers for success and ways you can prepare to excel in the field of hydraulic engineering.


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Building a Smarter Machine is Simply Good for Business

Alex Edwards and Ben Hoxie


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Let's face it, fluid power doesn't change all that much or fast. But, integration of the Internet of Things (IoT) helps to move the industry at a steady and continuous pace. The technology is becoming cheaper and more readily available, enabling connectivity with smart machines. In turn, these smart machines help manufacturers and engineers optimize component design and use. By capturing data that exists within components and systems and making it available, we create actionable knowledge – from when a hose will fail to how a pump can be run more efficiently. .


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New Safety and Emissions Standards Present an Opportunity for Smarter Machines

By QingHui Yuan, Manager of Advanced Technology Team, Eaton Hydraulics


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Can a hydraulic valve improve safety for operators while helping a manufacturer comply with new and more stringent emissions standards? Consider the story of a company that manufactures concrete pump trucks—and business is booming. Concrete pumpers are massive vehicles—and rightly so, given that they pump concrete through a tall boom to specific locations far from the concrete source. Concrete is a very heavy, viscous building material. Transporting and working with concrete typically calls for the beefiest materials designed to stand up under the weight and abuse. The boom that places concrete at desired location has typically been a heavy piece, due to the needs of moving concrete. However, new regulations require the total weight of the vehicle to be below a certain threshold to protect the safety and sustainability of public property. The biggest challenge is to lower the vehicle weight (to meet the public road requirements) while maintaining the high throughput of a concrete pump delivery safely and reliably at the construction site. .


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Interview of Dr. Peter Lauer Maintenance of Smart Machines

An interview of Dr. Peter Lauer


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Dr. Peter Lauer is a senior specialist in embedded control architecture at Eaton Corporation's Hydraulics Technology Organization in Eden Prairie, MN, leading electrohydraulic valve design. He offered his insight into maintenance of smart machines.


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Five Ways to Tell if Your Machine Could Benefit from Smart Technology

By Steve Zumbusch, Director of Advanced Platform Innovations


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Smart machines help end users gain greater intelligence into their equipment. In turn, this enhances machine performance and increases productivity and efficiency. To realize these benefits, end users should consider implementing more intelligent machinery throughout their facilities. Smart equipment offers many benefits in daily operations that justify the cost of the upgrade.

If you are thinking about upgrading or replacing your technology, consider these five reasons why your machine could benefit from smart equipment.


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How Do You Know When You’re Ready for Electro-Hydraulic Implementation?

By Michael Lindemann, Software Engineer


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The integration of electronics and hydraulics has grown dramatically in recent years, but not everyone has jumped on the bandwagon. For those considering implementing electro-hydraulic (EH) solutions, the key question often boils down to: “How do you know when you’re ready?”

To answer that question, those considering EH implementation should consider the benefits available, evaluate areas that can best capitalize on those benefits, and develop a game plan for implementation.


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11 Challenges machine designers face

By Evan Artis


Evan Artis Eaton

Machine design has seen rapid developments in recent years, especially with increasing popularity of smart machines. These advances include the development of intelligent components, better communication between operator and machine, automated machine decisions and more. Smart machines are more efficient, with interconnected components expanding the capabilities of machines to communicate with and respond to their surroundings like never before.

Smart machines provide a number of benefits including increased fuel efficiency, better performance and greater productivity. However, they can also present new challenges to machine designers as they learn the ins-and-outs of programming and maintaining smart components and machines.


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How New Products Can Ease Electro-Hydraulic Integration and Improve Flexibility

David Follebout and Michael Lindemann


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The integration of electronics and hydraulic systems may have initially created visions of a mysterious “black box” for traditional users, but the numerous benefits of EH (electro-hydraulic) integration have erased the doubts of many skeptics. Improved reliability of hydraulic systems, along with more flexibility, efficiency, and diagnostic capabilities, has helped EH integration become a way of life, rather than a futuristic concept.

As electronics have become more advanced and miniaturized, machines have become increasingly controlled by some form of electronic controller. Acceptance of EH integration has grown to the point where it is now commonplace, rather than novelty.


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How Dynamic Machine Control opens a smarter future with industrial valves

Per Danzl, Ph.D.


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Dynamic Machine Control (DMC) is the design paradigm that uses today's cutting-edge technologies to help build the smarter machines of tomorrow. DMC for fluid power applications includes major advances in industrial control valve technology, such as embedded controllers, sensor interfaces, software configurability, network communication capabilities, and real-time diagnostics.

These features make valves an integral part of the network control and communication system, taking commands, feeding back data and even executing custom control code at the node level. This results in a distributed control and diagnostic system that greatly expands application potential, opening doors for future innovation.


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Forestry Case Study: Smarter machines for improved control, efficiency and safety

By Chris Schottler


Chris_Schottler_Eaton  

The forestry industry continues to be radically altered by technology as it seeks increased productivity and greater efficiencies. Smarter machines begin to answer questions about productivity, efficiency and safety.

In particular, Eaton's contribution to the smarter machine movement—Dynamic Machine Control (DMC)—along with the products that support DMC, are opening new inroads for productivity, efficiency and safety in the forestry industry.


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4 reasons to consider distributed control over centralized control

By Chris Schottler


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Centralized control, typified by a central microcontroller with dedicated wiring to each control operation, has been the mainstay of control system design for years and has served OEMs well. But as distributed control drops in price and complexity, the opportunity to rethink how a smart system might simplify integration and manufacturing, and how it might impact your customers with increased efficiency and precision in operations and measurement.

Distributed Control Presents New Opportunities

Mechanical control plays a big role the hydraulic industry. Many low-end machines require very little intelligence. But increasingly, manufacturers and OEMs are responding to customer needs with solutions that incorporate smarter tools allowing for increased flexibility and efficiency. One central question for many is when to consider central control architecture versus distributed control architecture in mobile applications.


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How have human machine interfaces improved – and why?

By Tim Meehan and David Steadman


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Advances in machines mirror the tools we use to monitor and control those machines. Human Machine Interfaces (HMIs) used to monitor and manage today's hydraulic tools enable particular benefits, which take some getting used to.

Cruise control and an exercise in trust

Today's hydraulic human machine interfaces (HMIs) take their cues from the development of very common HMIs we take for granted, like our beloved cruise control.

As simple as cruise control is today, it didn't start that way. When cruise control was fitted to a Chrysler Imperial in 1958, it was an automobile option that met with healthy skepticism. While appealing for the long drives across U.S. interstates, fears of out-of-control crashes and speeding around tight curves also occupied consumers' minds. But as drivers experienced how the HMI worked and when to use it, they used it and then expected it on their vehicles. Cruise control became a standard feature over the years and we are surprised on a long drive when we reach for the switch on a rental car and it missing.


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What is an open platform?

Evan Artis, Product Manager for Electronic Controls and Software


Evan Artis Eaton

As hydraulic systems have gained sophistication with increased integration of electronic controls and computerization, opportunities to customize those systems have expanded significantly. With on-board computers often controlling operations such as the actuation of pumps and valves, system designers and end users can tweak those operations to fit their needs.

Customization opportunities have become more prevalent with software developed using an open platform concept. With this approach, software is developed with accessible standards and can be modified to function in different ways or integrated with existing applications to enhance functionality.


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What makes an industrial machine smart?

By Paul Smith


Paul Smith Eaton

The hydraulics industry has entered the smarter machine movement. The industrial equipment market is seeking reduced energy consumption, improved control and automation – allowing the many micro-decisions in a work circuit to be programmed in advance so when an operator pushes a button or pulls a lever, the machine adapts and responds smoothly and efficiently.

Smart machines mean different things to different people – there is a long, varied list of what makes an industrial machine smart, and none of it is truly right or truly wrong. However, there are key features that machine owners and operators agree make a machine smart.


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How Dynamic Machine Control is helping with plant efficiency

By Lyle Meyer, Global Product Management, Industrial Drives


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In today's manufacturing landscape, companies and their facilities face enormous pressures to increase operating efficiency while reducing their carbon footprint. Some may be motivated to improve efficiency due to increasingly stringent government energy regulations. Others may be looking for ways to reduce their operating expenses. Though, for most, it's likely a combination of both.


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Managing software updates

An interview of Yolanda Petre


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Yolanda Petre manages the software engineering group at Eaton Corporation's Hydraulics Technology Organization in Eden Prairie, MN. With over 20 years of experience developing embedded systems, software, and controls for hydraulic systems, she leads a global team in delivering embedded software and PC-based solutions. She offered her insight into how Eaton manages software development and helps its customers manage updates.


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What makes a mobile machine smart?

By Shelley Nation and Aaron Jagoda


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The hydraulics industry is moving to smarter machines. Conventional hydraulic systems can become unstable and unpredictable. One small action, like the heavy-handed jerk of a joystick, can trigger a chain reaction that puts operator safety and productivity at risk. End users are seeking better machine performance, looking to take advantage of the unmatched power density hydraulics provide, without the downsides.

There are many facets to this smart machine movement – intelligent components, better communication between operator and machine, automated machine decisions, and more. But, in our world of ever-changing and scalable options, what truly makes a machine "smart?"


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4 reasons to switch to a smarter hydraulic pump drive system

By Paul Smith


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In order to compete in today's global manufacturing world, companies must invest in people and technology that make "working smarter, not harder" the new standard.

The Hydraulics industry specifically is moving to smarter components and systems. OEMs want greater flexibility and efficiency in their designs in order to meet end users' demands for better performance from their equipment.

The ability to dynamically control machines is game-changing. Technology is making it possible to design and build machine components that do more than react to the commands we give them. In many cases, these smart components result in machines that give us valuable information that allows us to make important decisions about productivity, maintenance and efficiency. Going smarter also brings more freedom and flexibility than ever before.

More and more end users in industrial applications are looking for machines with smarter components. Expectations are being elevated and it's becoming clear that today's smart is tomorrow's dumb.


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We're a mid-sized original equipment manufacturer, how can we keep up in the Smarter Machine Movement?

By Robert Kitten and Jeff Theisen


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As the industry evolves and the movement to create smarter machines continues to spread, many original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) may be left asking themselves, "How can we keep up?" Battling obstacles like outdated equipment, a lack of resources to support new technology and the desire to move quickly to market, small to mid-size OEMs may find it even more difficult to answer this question.

Seeing this frustration first-hand from customers, Eaton developed the P1 Systems Integrator Program. Through this program, Eaton's experts in the Hydraulic and Electrical divisions join forces with a network of P1 Certified Systems Integrators nationwide. Together, this group partners with the small to mid-sized OEM to design a system of products that work intuitively and efficiently creating smart machines that respond to the market's needs.


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Nine ways smart machines improve fuel efficiency

By Tim Meehan


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Over the past decade there has been a growing need for fuel efficiency and reduced energy consumption in the hydraulics industry. Tier 4 emission regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency have driven reductions of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter for off-highway diesel engines. Improvements in the hydraulics can help reduce fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions in a similar way.

Enter smart machines. Offering more insight into machine operation than ever before, smart machines greatly improve fuel efficiency and help end users realize savings. In fact, there are several key ways smart machines are driving efficiency.


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The Future Workforce: Training and education for the smarter machine movement

By Shelley Nation and Aaron Jagoda


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The fluid power industry is generally perceived as old, dirty, noisy and stagnant, with little forward movement. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Conventional hydraulic systems might fit the stereotype, but the industry is rapidly entering the smart machine movement – technologies are becoming quieter, and more compact, efficient and intelligent, providing both new challenges and huge growth potential.

As the industry changes, so do the careers fueled by it. Traditional hydraulics careers demand new knowledge, a better understanding of electronics and software than ever before; while demand grows for different types of professionals, too. Employees skilled at mechatronics, the multidisciplinary field that includes engineering specialties from mechanical to electrical and computer to hydraulic, are in demand. Programmers and embedded systems experts are needed as the industry continues to build more intelligent machines.


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Six reasons you should switch to smart technology

By Steve Zumbusch


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The manufacturing industry is changing. The industry is moving to smarter machines, end users are demanding better performance from their equipment, and plant operators are looking for ways to increase productivity and efficiency without impacting the bottom line. One of the key steps in this process is the integration of smarter equipment throughout facilities. While replacing or upgrading equipment can be costly, more intelligent machinery provides many benefits in day-to-day operations to help justify the expense.

1. Improved Connectivity

As more and more industrial operations are attempting to integrate systems throughout plants, allowing multiple pieces of machinery to be networked together is a primary benefit of using smarter equipment. As a whole, this type of integration interconnects the plant, enabling machinery on one side of the facility to connect and communicate with machinery from across the plant, and empowering operators to monitor the system as a whole. More and more facilities are turning to Internet of Things (IoT) enabled components to provide this level of connectivity.


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Four ways dynamic machine control is changing the future of industrial valves

By Per Danzl


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Eaton valves, like the AxisPro™ proportional industrial valve, are changing the face of industrial control one application at a time. Design engineers are using embedded systems (valves with advanced control modes and network capabilities) to bring control much closer to the action. Results include:

1. Precise Programmability: Embedded systems can run custom software applications tailored to individual applications. For example, duty cycle sequencing can be done right on the valve, simplifying the requirements on the centralized Programmable Logic Controller (PLC), or eliminating the need for a PLC entirely.


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