Alan Hitchcox

Alan
L.
Hitchcox
Editor,
Penton Media Inc.

Alan became a technical editor in 1981 and joined Hydraulics & Pneumatics in 1987. After serving in the US Army as a wheeled vehicle mechanic, he graduated with a BS in engineering technology from Franklin University, Columbus, Ohio, while working as an industiral service coordinator and project manager at an industrial distributor. He has taken technical courses in fluid power and electronic and digital control at the Milwaukee School of Engineering and the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and has served on several industry committees.

Articles
Assumptions and Safety Don’t Mix
Counterbalance valves are among the top subjects viewed week after week on our website. I don’t know why, so your guess is as good as mine.
Hydraulics Powers Off-Road HVAC System
Hydraulics for air conditioning? And heat? Under certain conditions, hydraulics wins out over electric motors and belt drives for powering climate-control systems in large off-highway vehicles.
Ceramic Air Valves Stand Up to Dirt
Multiple daily failures of valves in a smelting operation’s cranes led to a switch to ceramic valves, which have so far delivered 100% reliability and significantly lowered costs.
Low-Energy Wireless Sensors Work with iOS Mobile Apps
Parker Hannifin’s Quick Coupling Div., Minneapolis, now offers wireless sensors that can communicate with iOS (iPhone, iPad, and iPad Touch) devices.
The Internet of Uncertainty
The Internet of Things refers to future communication networks of low-power sensors on every “thing” from valve spools, pumps, and cylinders, to home appliances and even people. Billions of these sensors will transmit information to let people better manage factories, hospitals, municipal services, homes, and their everyday lives.
Pumps Power Railcar Mover
When an OEM in the rail industry needed a new pump to replace a discontinued design, they were right on track in finding a simpler and more-compact solution.
Stop High-Pressure Leaks with Flange Fittings
When larger diameter tubing is needed, or space constraints don’t allow swing room for hex wrenches or ratchets, use these reliable end fittings to connect tubing to ports.
Getting Behind the Wheels

Have you ever wanted to drive a garbage truck? I don’t mean as a profession, just because you could. The opportunity arose for me, and I jumped at the chance.

Seal Supplier Partners with MSOE for New Test Method

Hallite Seals Americas, Inc., Wixom, Mich. announced today the successful development of a new test procedure for assessing the amount of dirt and dust that enters a typical hydraulic system through the rod wiper. Developed in cooperation with Milwaukee School of Engineering’s (MSOE) Fluid Power Institute™, the test breaks new ground because it features a novel methodology for measuring dry particles attributed to being a major cause of hydraulic system inefficiency, degradation and failure. It fills a critical need within the cylinder manufacturing industry.

All-Stainless Air Cylinders Are Ideal for Washdown Applications

Applications in food processing palnts can really be tough on machine components — especially air cylinders. That's because government agencies require frequent washdown of equipment that comes in direct or incidental contact with food products. These regulations are enacted not only to protect our food supply, but also to protect workers at the food processing plants.

System Simplifies Hydraulic Tank Cleaning
Super Caddy 3 is a service tool that gives dealers and service center the ability to clean a hydraulic system efficiently and with confidence.
Smart Hydraulic Hose Protects Golf Greens
Golf courses use a wide variety of mobile equipment for maintaining fairways, greens, and other areas. So if equipment failure causes oil to leak onto public areas....
Multi-Domain Modeling and Simulation Intended for Fluid Power

Easy5 software is a graphics-based tool for modeling, simulation, and design of multi-domain dynamic systems characterized by differential, difference, and algebraic equations. Systems that can be analyzed using Easy5 include hydraulic, pneumatic, mechanical, electrical, thermal, powertrain, vehicle dynamics, digital/analog control systems, and more.

2015 Fluid Power Manufacturers Index

This list is a compendium of  hundreds of manufacturers and service providers in the fluid power industry. Advertisers in our January 2015 issue appear in bold, with complete contact information and hyperlinks to their websites. 

   A

A & A Mfg. Co. Inc., (262) 786-1500, www.gortite.com

A&R Hydraulics, (586) 756-2810, www.arhyd.net

AAA Products International, (214) 357-3851, www.aaaproducts.com

Fluid power innovator dies at 96
Bob Firth was a self-made engineer, studying engineering at the New York City Public Library while working for Republic Aviation, manufacturer of the Thunderbolt fighter-bomber of WW2 fame.
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