Versatile Hydraulic Pump Test Stand for R&D and Production

July 2, 2024 - Author: Mitch Zangl - Lead Mechanical Engineer, Mike Orendorff - Software Development Engineer

Project Features:
Hydraulic Pump Test Stand, Pump Performance Testing, Single and Dual Pumps, Custom Widget, Test Control and DAQ Systems

Hydraulic pump test stand for a marine equipment manufacturer

The Challenge

A marine equipment manufacturer sought a new hydraulic pump test stand to support the development and production of new hydraulic pump products and improve pump performance testing of existing ones.

The manufacturer’s existing pump test stands could only fit single pump articles, and the company was designing a new dual pump product. They also needed to use separate test stands to run different tests. Consequently, running a complete set of tests was time-consuming since operators had to move the Unit Under Test (UUT) to multiple stands. These stands were also aging and prone to breakdowns, further slowing down testing.

The company asked ACS to design and build a test stand capable of accommodating both single and dual hydraulic pumps. The stands also needed to be suitable for either R&D or production testing. The manufacturer also wanted the flexibility to configure new test scenarios as needed.

The Solution

ACS engineers designed the test stand with separate mounting plates for single and dual pump configurations, enabling quick product changeover. An automated docking system connects the UUT to input/output valves after operators load it onto the mounting plate. To accommodate the company’s stringent space constraints, ACS engineers used 3D modeling to optimize the intricate piping layout for functionality and maintenance.

Inaccuracies in the initial pump documentation and mid-project product design changes necessitated design alterations to the test stand. In close collaboration with the engineering team, the fabricators modified piping and reconfigured actuators to accommodate the product design revisions. This seamless coordination between design and manufacturing teams enabled them to make the necessary changes without compromising the project timeline.

Using the ACS framework, ACS software engineers developed test control and DAQ systems integrated with the manufacturer’s Dynamic Link Library (DLL). Test operators can run full test sets, individual tests, and create new test scripts by setting new parameter values. A custom widget provides real-time visibility into the testing process, pass/fail status, and error codes for troubleshooting.

The ACS engineers designed the test systems for maximum flexibility, allowing operators to reconfigure test scripts and capture larger data sets for comprehensive post-test analysis, catering to both R&D and production testing requirements.

The Outcome

ACS delivered two hydraulic pump test stands that can fulfill both R&D and production roles. The compact, mobile stands can be integrated anywhere in the equipment manufacturer’s environment where there’s an electrical connection.

By consolidating multiple test capabilities onto a single platform, the marine equipment manufacturer can now conduct comprehensive evaluations efficiently, eliminating the need for time-consuming transitions between dedicated test stands.

With their flexible physical design and adaptable testing parameters, the stands enable the manufacturer to readily accommodate evolving product lines and testing demands. ACS provided the company with a universal mounting pattern, allowing them to design and manufacture custom plates for testing future pump models. This modular mounting plate system maximizes the long-term value of the test stands.

The company received a comprehensive library of test scripts to run the full scope of required test scenarios out of the box. The ACS team also provided them with access to the ACS framework scripting tools so they have the flexibility to program and integrate new automated test procedures tailored to their evolving product testing needs.

In addition to being able to create and modify automated test scripts, the manufacturer’s team can also operate the stand manually. This allows them to validate specific concepts before running full automated testing.

Another key advantage of the reconfigurable test and DAQ systems is the extensive data logging capability across test cycles. Rather than just capturing pass/fail results, the DAQ system records rich data streams throughout executed tests. This wealth of information unlocks powerful post-test analysis opportunities, allowing the manufacturer to gain deeper insights into pump performance testing and identify areas for improvement.

By addressing the manufacturer’s challenges with a space-efficient, versatile, and user-friendly solution, ACS has enabled the marine equipment manufacturer to optimize testing operations, accelerate time-to-market, and drive innovation in their hydraulic pump product line.

Key Features

  • Test stand designed with interchangeable mounting plates to accommodate both single and dual hydraulic pump configurations.
  • Advanced test control and DAQ systems designed on the ACS framework, featuring a user-friendly interface for configuring test scripts and scope of data collection.
  • Extensive data logging captures detailed data streams throughout test cycles, facilitating in-depth post-test analysis and pump performance testing insights.

ACS Services

  • Design and fabrication of a customized hydraulic pump test stand
  • Software engineering on the ACS framework for test stand operations, data acquisition
  • Factory Acceptance Testing (FAT)