The waste collection industry faces a literal mountain of trash and recyclables each day, dispatching trucks from house to house and cart or container to dumpster, gathering recycling and waste to transport it to a transfer station or landfill. This highly regulated industry is constantly looking for ways to reduce wasted energy and increase efficiencies. Proper vehicle maintenance is one way to make the process of transporting and hauling more effective and efficient.
Smart valves, such as Eaton’s new CMA Advanced Mobile Valve with Independent Metering can help fleet owners achieve some of these goals. These new valves provide multiple benefits.
- Careful Control: Independent Metering allows for independent meter-in/meter-out, providing smooth and efficient load control under various load conditions, especially important when gathering residential trash. Networked pilot valves employing high performance, low power voice coil actuators, drive twin independent main spools situated in the CMA valve main stage. Each main spool has an integrated Linear Variable Differential Transformer (LVDT) position sensor and port pressure sensor, enabling closed-loop spool control through the use of an embedded microprocessor located on every pilot valve. Electronic, independent metering of port flow provides infinite control flexibility when implementing programmable flow and pressure control strategies. This allows the operator to have flexibility to control the refuse arm in an optimum manner.
- Getting Trucks on the Road Faster: Compared to conventional mobile valves that may require a distributor to stock several spools to commission or maintain the valve to the machine, the CMA valve is easily adjusted and tuned through the use of advanced software control algorithms. With conventional load sense mobile valves, there are often time consuming and complex hardware changes to spools and housing, which can be eliminated with the CMA valve. In contrast, the CMA valve uses software to make quick real-time changes, enabling troubleshooting and testing in a fraction of the time it would take with conventional valves. This means that refuse vehicles can be maintained, the controls refined, and they can be back on the road more quickly, delivering maximum performance and up time.
- And Keeping Them There: The smart CMA valve can even provide significant diagnostic information to the machine operator. The CMA valve includes diagnostics on the inlet, tank, load sense, work port pressures, spool positions, consumed flow, and oil temperature in passive and over running conditions. This data makes it easier to identifying root causes, assist on remote diagnostics, and develop a plan of action helping avoid a broken down truck full of stagnant waste.
- Preventing Leaks: A hose burst on a route knocks the truck out of commission, and requires the truck owner to clean up the spill, potentially causing thousands of dollars in Hazmat clean up. The CMA valve hose burst protection will detect a potential leak before it happens, which is significant to the refuse and recycling industry. While it does not eliminate a hose burst, hose burst detection prevents costly spills by monitoring flow to and from the service and it automatically closes the service if a leak is detected.
- Improving Worker Safety: Keeping a truck running and moving the trash is important, but doing so in a safe way is paramount. With the CMA valve, the machine will continue to operate even when the valve may be experiencing performance issues. “Limp mode” allows end users, in the event of sensor failure, to continue to work even when the valve is performing at a reduced rate, until the machine can be serviced. This not only allows the truck to finish the route and provides time for the truck to get back to the garage for repairs.
- Fleet Upgrades: As many fleets are moving to natural gas, OEMs are looking for additional options to add this capability to their new trucks. Adding a smart valve provides the long term opportunity to build a more efficient hydraulic system – now or later. The OEM can install the CMA valve first, and then later develop software or utilize future hydraulic technology to further enhance truck capabilities.
How can refuse and recycling trucks most effectively get materials off the streets and into transfer, recycling or landfill? Precise control, efficient vehicles and tools to improve maintenance and diagnostics are all excellent places to start, and can be improved by Eaton's new CMA mobile valve.