Some takeaways from EIMA

By Roberta Prandi01 November 2021

EIMA International show closes with some shine. 

The EIMA International 2021 agricultural exhibition closed its doors with an official number of 270 700 visitors, 25 900 of which from outside Italy - a pretty good result considering that the show was the first large indoor exhibition for the off-highway industry in Italy since February 2020.

Interesting numbers also for exhibitors, with 1 350 registered companies (350 from 40 countries outside Italy). Despite some major OEMs missing, the hustle and bustle inside the many halls of the Bologna showgrounds was decent when compared to that of the pre-pandemic editions.

Diesel Progress International attended the show and picked up a couple of the news being announced by the exhibitors.

No new product announcement at FPT Industrial, but the company showcased engines representing its roadmap towards energy transmission, among which the F28 modular engine platform that includes various models from 37 to 75 kW, available with different ‘fuel’ options.

The F28 Stage 5 diesel is a compact unit that delivers 3.4-L performance in a 2-L package and features integrated EGR channel through the cylinder head, reduced bridge block design and a very compact aftertreatment system.

F28 natural gas engine by FPT Industrial FPT Industrial’s F28 Natural Gas engine for agricultural applications.

The recently introduced F28 Hybrid was unveiled live for the first time. The 2.8-L unit is available with P1 Low Voltage (48V) architecture and up to 20 kW continuous electric power (30 kW peak), while the internal combustion engine delivers 55 kW power and 375 Nm torque. The solution is ready for high-voltage P2 architecture with integrated clutch enabling plug-in solutions for low noise/zero-emissions operations. The integrated engine layout allows for plug&play replacement of larger diesel versions.

The F28 is available also in a Natural Gas version which shares common base components with the diesel version offering the same performance. With this solution, net CO2 emissions are near-zero or even negative when running on biomethane obtained from agricultural waste and liquid manure. It delivers up to 55 kW power and 375 Nm torque. An high-performance version achieves 75 kW power and 415 Nm torque.

FPT Industrial also showcased the N67 Natural Gas engine: a six-cylinder, 6.7-L unit that delivers the same performance as diesel engines, with up to 180 kW at 1 800 r/min and 1 184 Nm torque at 1 500 r/min. Compliance with EU Stage 5 emissions regulations is achieved with a simple maintenance-free three-way catalyst. This engine powers the New Holland T6.180 Methane Power tractor.

Kohler Engines presented two new models of the KDI engine family: the KDI 3404TCR-SCR Power Pack and the KDI 2504TCR Agri.

The KDI 3404TCR-SCR Stage 5 in the Power Pack version is the most powerful engine in Kohler’s offering. It delivers a maximum power of 112 kW at 1800 r/min (105 kW at 2200 r/min).

Kohler said, the Power Pack version is in fact a ready-to-run engine since its compact size and integrated aftertreatment make it adaptable to any machine or application. The same engine model is also available in the Electro Pack version.

The KDI 2504TCR Stage 5 Agri model is a customized variant strictly for tractors. It features a compact aftertreatment system mounted on the engine and a dedicated layout for the brake compressor and air-conditioning compressor, mounted in front.

Kohler's KDI 2504 TCR Agri diesel engine A customized version dedicated to AG tractors, the KDI 2504TCR Agri by Kohler is EU Stage 5 compliant.

The KDI 2504TCR Agri delivers 55 kW maximum power from 2000 r/min and 315 Nm torque at 1500 r/min. Kohler explained this engine allows to work also at low rpm while maintaining the expected performance and at the same time saving on fuel consumption.

Kohlers also exhibited its K-HEM 1003 and K-HEM 2504 hybrid units. The manufacturer reached an agreement for the K-HEM 1003 to power CEOL, the autonomous agricultural robot by France-based Agreenculture, starting in 2022. The robot is remote-controlled via GPS and Christophe Aubé, founder and president of Agreenculture, explained that in the first version, the system works as a series hybrid, while starting in 2022 it will switch to a parallel configuration that activates a hydraulic pump for the required power peaks.

We have to note here that the organizers of EIMA issued a release stating that Italy is one of the most advanced countries in the world for the automation of agricultural machinery, after the USA, Holland, France and Germany.

Italy has produced four advanced agricultural robots and most of them, still at the prototype stage, are powered by electricity.

Walvoil showcased its Adaptive Load Sensing (ALS) hydraulic system on an Agri Farmer 34.7 GD telehandler by Dieci; the ALS is among the products winning EIMA’s Technical Innovation contest.

Dieci and Walvoil partnered on tests for the ALS and conducted all experiments on Dieci’s telehandlers, with the first success in 2020 on an Agri Plus 42.7 GD.

The version on the more compact and easy-to handle Agri Farmer 34.7 GD confirmed the ALS effectiveness compared to standard configurations. Tests showed a consumption reduction between 5 and 6% compared to the same machine without ALS. In the positioning accuracy test, a higher productivity of the machine was clearly noticeable, with the improved controllability of the Precision function allowing 14% more operating cycles in the same amount of time.

The ALS system by Walvoil on a Dieci telehandler Walvoil and Dieci partnered for the testing of the new Adaptive Load Sensing hydraulic system that won an award for Technical Innovation at EIMA 2021

The heart of ALS is represented by an electro-hydraulic device fitted on the directional control valve; the electronic control unit collects information from the operator and from the machine sensors and operates the ALS device, allowing to raise or to lower the load-sensing hydraulic signal consequently varying the pressure differential to dynamically adjust it to the efficiency and functionality requirements of the vehicle.

The next EIMA International is scheduled from 9 to 13 November 2022 in Bologna, Italy.

Although scheduling another show a year from now is an understandable decision to bring the show back to its traditional biannual schedule in even years, the choice might be a bit tricky if we consider the number of key exhibitions for the off-highway community that are taking place next year and what it will mean in terms of budgets and use of resources for exhibitors and visitors alike.

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