BFPA 2024 Yearbook & Members' Directory 2024

BFPA 65th Anniversary celebration I would like to congratulate the BFPA on reaching this 65th-year milestone. I know the Association has been an invaluable source of support and value to the industry over those years, while also championing its cause regarding industry standards and government lobbying. Innovation Of course, our industry has many longserving, highly skilled professionals who serve end users and OEMs in various industry sectors every day. As a younger engineer, I thought it would be pertinent and in line with the Association’s celebrations, to offer readers of the BFPA Yearbook the story of my career so far. Over the years, HYDAC has given me the support to grow and experience multiple disciplines in the company, thus giving me insights into various industry sectors. Now, as the Head of HYDAC’s Business Innovation Group, I can utilise this experience to lead our next innovations. The HYDAC Business Innovation Group (BIG) uses innovation and collaboration to drive our mission to empower sustainable movement and make a positive impact on the world. We develop new innovations for the industry, particularly for the MRO/end-user parts of our business, which covers primarily the industrial sector. Our team is made up of young modern multi disciplined members from different countries. We focus on the latest technologies and their potential application in creating new services and products to support the industry. With HYDAC’s global presence, we have the ability to station team members in most countries, allowing us to nurture the best talent from around the world. This is crucial in terms of global innovation, as problems and challenges can vary depending on the industry and location. Keeping up the skills momentum One significant challenge we face today is the dwindling expertise, particularly in fluid power, and how this is gradually disappearing from the industry. Therefore, we need to consider how we can use technology to address this issue. This could involve enhancing current practices with new technologies or amalgamating existing technologies and deploying them in novel ways. Valuable know-how One of our key projects over the past 18 months has been to develop technologies that deliver services and offer our knowhow: we call this the HYDAC Fluid Care Programme. To begin this project, we had to understand the current practices of many of our clients. We discovered that a significant number of them conduct oil analysis but often overlook the critical actions that result from it. This oversight is frequently due to the absence of a solution being presented or the prevailing practice of changing the fluid whenever the limits are exceeded. We asked the ourselves whether we could offer a service based on our ‘systems knowledge’ or ‘fluid and lubricants knowledge’, thereby resolving issues by prompting clients to take the correct actions based on their existing monitoring practices. Instead of jumping in and spending considerable amounts of money on state of-the-art monitoring equipment, why not start with optimising what we already have? This is precisely the type of advice and guidance we can provide. We use a software to support tasks and actions that need to be carried out to return systems from critical condition to ‘good’ health. While this may not sound cutting-edge, it serves as a crucial first step into these new technologies. Solving the fundamentals first We could ask: Is industry ready for some of the more high-end technologies such as AI and machine learning? When we have good data form a large installed base of equipment, then it makes the application of these technologies easier. However, in many cases, where there are one-off applications, things become more complex. Additionally, there are varying levels of maintenance and reliability programmes across different industry sectors. Some applications need the fundamentals fixing such as cleaning hydraulic fluids to meet an ISO cleanliness standard, and others would benefit from optimising efficiency through more complex cloud monitoring and machine learning programs. So, to address the question, I would say yes. However, it is more about where you begin and progressing step by step in implementing technology, where you can observe and start measuring the value. In a sense, all these technologies are here to provide business value, with most of them aiming to enhance decision-making processes, leading to more sustainable operations. Younger generation 22 Tobias Daley, Head – HYDAC Business Innovation Group, reflects on his career assent as a young professional, and considers the way cutting-edge technology could shape and enhance the future of the fluid power industry. Tobias Daley: “Over the years, HYDAC has given me the support to grow and experience multiple disciplines in the company, thus giving me insights into various industry sectors.”