For the safety of our roadways, air brakes are the most important component of commercial motor vehicles. The braking system on semi-trucks, large straight trucks, garbage trucks and school buses use compressed air to push the brake shoe lining onto the brake drum creating friction to slow the vehicle. That may not seem very complicated, but it is. The system to slow down a vehicle that may weigh 80,000 pounds fully loaded is not only complicated, it’s critical. Air brakes have to work effectively every time and they must be adequately maintained.
Electric vehicles have become common place in today’s transportation, from personal cars and small trucks to mass transit. As technology is evolving in electric mobile vehicles, major OEMs of construction, off-highway and warehousing equipment are pursuing a combination of full electric and electric hybrid equipment in response to the ecological demand to reduce fuel costs, lower carbon footprints and comply with increasingly stringent emissions directives.
For several years, the growth in technology directly influenced by the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) has been providing controls and real-time monitoring capabilities in fluid power applications.
Data collection and using that information to operate sensors has long been a part of the fluid power industry. Today, the advancements in IIoT play a significant role in hydraulics and pneumatics as they are frequently incorporated into control valves, pumps, hoses and fittings.
Hydraulic Fluids in Aircraft
Hydraulic fluids used in aircraft are relatively thin compared to industrial fluids. They must also be fire resistant, which is critical when the nearest fire department is five miles below, not a few blocks away. Aircraft hydraulic fluids also differ from industrial applications because they must remain at -65° and up to 275° F. At those temperatures water and vegetable-based oil lubricants will freeze or boil. The primary hydraulic fluids used in military and commercial aircraft depend on the particular application and environment:
Hydraulic Systems: The Heart and Arteries of Aircrafts
Hydraulic systems are used on aircraft to move and actuate landing gear, flaps and brakes. Larger aircraft rely heavily on these systems for flight controls, spoilers and thrust reversers. These systems are reliable due to using hydraulic fluid that is virtually incompressible and able to transmit high pressures while being lightweight and more durable in comparison to pneumatic systems.
As with many other major industries such as automotive and medical equipment, the tier supplier network in aerospace is comprised of those who provide a variety of essential materials and commodities that are used to manufacture a finished product. There are three primary levels of segregation for tier suppliers; Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3. Each of these tiers plays a significant role in the supply chain to aerospace OEMs and the support of U.S. military readiness. First we need to understand who the OEM is.
The past couple of years have been years of growth and change for Brennan— from the construction of a new Global Headquarters facility, to updates in layout and processes in our facilities across the globe. Most recently, Brennan's Canadian Manufacturing facility has undergone new changes and a new layout to support a more efficient way of doing business and continued growth. With these changes, the facility was able to receive its ISO certification this November.
The U.S. Aerospace & Defense industry is the world’s largest manufacturer of highly advanced aircraft, space systems and defense equipment. For over a century the aerospace and defense industries in America have been pivotal in creating the most superior military on the planet. As the technological leader in design and development the United States’ significant achievements have lead the way for today’s modern communication, transportation and medical achievements throughout the world. The Aerospace & Defense industry continues to be one of the largest employers and serves as the nation’s economic baseline through its vast supply chain; from the world’s largest defense contractors, down through the three primary manufacturing tiers. From major contractors such as General Dynamics, to tier one manufacturers such as little known Inseego’s IoT products and more widely known industrial manufacturers such as Babcock & Wilcox, all the way to local machine shops, the military industrial complex is the strongest segment in U.S. manufacturing. The system is tightly controlled, requiring participants to follow rigorous specifications such as ITAR registration (International Traffic in Arms Regulations), be in good standing on the QPL (Qualified Parts List) and Nadcap accredited (National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program).
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