These days, mobile machines used in a broad range of markets such as agriculture, construction, forestry, material handling and transportation are exceptionally sophisticated pieces of equipment. Industry megatrends such as automation, connectivity and electrification have converged to ensure that excavators, loaders and other hydraulic mobile machines have more functional capability than ever before.
In this digitally driven environment, the demand for innovation is relentless. That provides a real challenge for OEMs, who are expected to work faster and smarter to come up with new features that deliver a competitive advantage.
For engineers, this means developing and prototyping new electrohydraulic systems in the shortest time possible. One means of achieving efficiency in product development is through the use of more high-level graphical design tools to design, simulate and deploy innovations at speed.The power of partnership
That was the inspiration for a collaboration between motion and control technologies specialist Parker Hannifin and computer software giant MathWorks® on IQANdesign 6TM – a new software package with MATLAB® Simulink® integration that has been developed to speed innovation in electronic controls for mobile machines. IQANdesign 6 features an IQAN toolbox for Simulink that can streamline the model-based design, simulation and deployment of electronic controls – a significant development which is expected to transform work that involves the creation or improvement of mobile machine functions.
Historically, engineers and scientists around the globe have benefitted from the IQAN and Simulink product families, accelerating the pace of discovery, innovation and development in sectors that extend from automotive to electronics. Integrating the two software environments reduces development time with a more efficient and convenient tool chain, offering users an unprecedented way to rapidly deploy code on production-ready hardware in real-time applications.
But what does that mean in terms of functionality for the design engineer faced with the competitive pressure of bringing new electronic controls for mobile machines to market?
Firstly, the seamless integration of Simulink models within the IQAN ecosystem enables automatic generation of real-time applications from Simulink models targeting IQAN-MC4x controllers. Concurrent execution of multiple models with individual time bases and priorities are also supported.
Also, Simulink models are executed in a dedicated real-time kernel, with Inports and Outports available in IQANdesign application logic. Using IQANdesign, users can view and navigate Simulink models, which are also included within system simulations provided by IQANsimulate. In addition, Simulink Testpoints are visible and measurable in IQANdesign/IQANrun.
More streamlined working
In short, the collaboration between Parker and MathWorks is about removing time and resource obstacles for research and development teams. It provides the perfect solution for businesses coming under increasing pressure to innovate at a time when mobile machines will get smarter than ever before. Learn more about IQAN products, or contact us for more information.
This article was contributed by Johan Lidén, product manager IQAN Electronics, Electronic Controls Business Unit, Parker Hannifin Manufacturing Sweden AB.