Plant & Equipment

Volvo on track for prestigious innovation award

Volvo Construction Equipment?s pre-heated self-regulated air intake system was developed by design engineer Joakim Haegerstam to ensure articulated haulers meet strict engine emission regulations with maintained or improved performance in cold climates.

The system has been shortlisted in the Embedded and critical systems category of the awards, which highlight the best new innovations from around the world.

The pre-heated self-regulated air intake system introduces a new way to regulate the air intake temperature inside construction equipment.

To work correctly, Volvo CE?s Exhaust After Treatment System requires high exhaust temperatures ? this new innovation raises the temperature of the exhaust gases without increasing fuel consumption.

?The basic principle is that waste heat from the engine heats the intake air and that causes the machine to experience higher ambient temperatures than really is the case,? Haegerstam explained. ?When the engine requires warmer air, the charge air fan speed is reduced so that no ambient air enters the engine compartment and pre-heated air enters the air intake.

?With this system the machine believes the outside temperature is up to 30?C higher than it actually is ? for every 1?C the air intake temperature is raised, 1.5?C is gained in the exhaust gas temperature.

?This technology reduces fuel consumption compared to the current, conventional heat modes which raise the exhaust temperature but are known for high fuel consumption.?

?Successfully developing Tier 4 Final compliant engines which meet all emission, quality, efficiency and cost targets before the legislation comes into force is one of the highest priorities for Volvo CE?s Technology Function,? said Anders P. Larsson, executive vice president of Volvo CE?s Technology Function.

As well as providing hot air and enabling articulated haulers to work efficiently in cold conditions, the pre-heated self-regulated air intake system allows the machine to obtain ambient air when needed.

When the engine needs cooler air, the charge air fan speeds up so ambient air enters the engine compartment and the air intake. This means that the machine can work with increased efficiency in both extremely cold and hot environments.

Another benefit of the system is that now that the air intake is located inside the engine compartment, located in a much cleaner and less dusty area, the filter service interval is expected to increase.

A panel of industry and academic experts will announce the winning entries during a presentation on 22 November, 2012.

Source: Volvo Construction Equipment

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