Special Contents

Project Story

Development of EHESS (Electro-Hydraulic Energy Saving System)
Creating new hybrid products together with people who share the same dream.

The EHSS (Electro-Hydraulic Energy Saving System) concept is a project that got its start from the idea that maybe hydraulic equipment manufacturers could create a new hybrid product. We spent all our time until the late hours every day developing this with people from hydraulics, electronics, electrical, and various other departments. The idea came about just when sales of the 2nd generation Prius began, and attention around the world was beginning to notice it. Construction equipment manufacturers also naturally began working to make hybrid products available. The idea that KYB initially developed wasn’t really accepted. There wasn’t any point of energy saving products if they hadn’t caught on, which is why we wanted to make something good ourselves; but if our timing was off we wouldn’t be able to sell it. It was a time when the focus was on energy savings, so there was a lot of expectation from companies and enormous pressure to ensure that the project wasn’t delayed.

Mr. Junichiro Sugimoto
Confront the difficulties and problems that block your path by throwing yourself at them.

As for me, I joined because my boss asked me to solve a problem that arose with a prototype that was manufactured. The problem was related to noise coming from the gears. I remember that not only wasn’t I particularly skilled in the field of acoustics, but I had a hard time just figuring out where to begin. I wasn’t able to clear my targets, and after repeated trial and error I really understood the depth and difficulty of acoustics problems. For areas that I couldn’t solve with just my knowledge and experience alone I turned to literature and gear manufacturers, and participated in workshops to get advice from many people. I remember that in order to solve the problem I had to throw myself at it. It took a year and a half to finally exceed my initial targets. Even higher targets were needed after that, and through trial and error I increased my precision.

There is no end to a project. Always pursue your ideals.

The point where you have a rough idea of how to create a product is probably when you’re at a good point in a project. However, the project wasn’t just something to succeed at; there would be no point to it if it didn’t become a product that even more people will use, so we had to pursue the price point as much as possible and further develop the product. Activities for commercializing the next product have already begun. I continuously pursued my ideals, eagerly so even, without being afraid of failure. I think this might be one good point of KYB. The engineers are asked to create something new, never seen before. They can’t create a new idea or solve a problem with just the knowledge they have from what they hear from people or literature. It’s important and necessary to build on your own experiences, which is why I want to bravely try everything and not be afraid of failure.

Please simply explain the features of EHESS.

This system effectively utilizes the high pressure oil generated by braking when a hydraulic power shovel is in action to reduce the load on the engine. Through this we can propose fuel cost savings and reduce CO2 emissions. Further, it can be installed with all the functions of traditional hydraulic systems intact so that even if the system were to shut down, it would not affect the basic action of the shovel. It’s a flexible system that allows work to continue.

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