New Delhi: Efficient, clean, safe and connected: This is how ZF defines its vision “The Future of Farming”. At Agritechnica, World’s leading trade fair for agricultural machinery from November 12 – 18, 2023 in Hanover, Germany, the company shows forward looking solutions for agriculture, offers tailor-made and efficient drive solutions for all vehicle classes and technology levels and provides the right solution according to the respective customer and market requirements.Vehicle motion control
DriveLine Technology CVT-Technology — ZF TERRAMATIC and eTERRAMATIC: Continuously variable transmissions for tractors from ZF increase the productivity and enable the driver to concentrate more on the actual work process. Continuously variable transmissions significantly reduce the time required for the work process and the productivity gain has a positive effect on overall fuel consumption. ZF sets the benchmark in the field of CVT technology with the modular TERRAMATIC and ECCOM transmission series, thus covering the complete range for standard tractors in the power range from 70 to 450 hp.
Compared to conventional CVT transmissions, the eTERRAMATIC, a power-split continuously variable transmissions offer potential for further performance improvements in the work process. Supported by the functional integration of the electric power take-off (ePTO) in an electrified drive train (eCVT), these contribute to the optimization of system costs and vehicle integration. The special feature here is that the variator, consisting of two electric motors, is responsible for both the drive and thus the control of the transmission ratio as well as the generator functionality. (Fig. 2_ZF-eTERRAMATIC) Braking technology: ZF’s Industrial Division will introduce its new brake-by-wire solutions at Agritechnica 2023 in Hanover. A global leader in hydraulic and electro-hydraulic braking systems, ZF supports customers in the heavy duty, off-highway, construction, mining, and agriculture sectors with safe and efficient brake technology. The company’s newest brake-by-wire solution (Fig. 3_Braking Systems diagram) is an important step change, as it provides vehicle manufacturers the ability to control deceleration via an electronic signal that adjusts brake pressure when needed, removing the need for hydraulic lines in the cab and evolving towards remote and autonomous operation.
In line with the maxim “Vision Zero”, ZF’s objective is to reduce not only accidents and downtimes due to failures, but also emissions to zero. Above all in the agricultural field, this target is always linked to a sustainable increase in productivity ZF is constantly advancing vehicle electrification and has meanwhile come to be known as the world champion of variation with its many integrated system solutions. In fact, ZF now offers the broadest range of hybrid and all-electric drive solutions for almost every vehicle segment. ZF supplies complete electrification systems for agricultural machinery manufacturers from one source.
Electrification of tractors : With the eTERRAMATIC eTMG11 axle drive (Fig. 4_System diagram eTMG11), ZF is presenting a fully electrified hydrostatic CVT drive technology for BEV or FEV vehicle architectures for the first time. The modular principle, similar to the conventional TERRAMATIC series, enables easy integration into today’s vehicle architecture. eTMG 11 offers the same driving performance and functionality as the current TERRAMATIC series, including the control of all power take-offs or the mechanical PTO as well as the integration of all HMI and CU components into the existing vehicle architecture.
Electric drives for implements and trailers: With individual wheel drive and central drive concepts (Fig. 5_eTRAC eTDW 80 plow), ZF shows how electromechanical systems can also be applied in off-road applications. The electrification of the driveline via electric single-wheel or central drives from the ZF eTRAC series (Fig. 6_eTRAC eTDW 80) on the trailer or attachment ensures optimum forward movement in the field. ZF is flexible when it comes to the technical implementation of the energy source. The ZF TERRA+ generator module, battery or hydrogen are all conceivable options.
Electric drives for compact vehicles: Electric drive systems for purely electric compact vehicles, such as yard loaders or telehandlers, offer several advantages compared to diesel-powered vehicles, especially for use in agricultural technology and in the municipal sector (Fig. 7_ eCompact Loader). The most important advantages here are emission-free driving, especially in stables and indoor areas, as well as a significantly reduced noise level.
Electric drives for field robots: The ZF eTRAC electric traction drive forms the technological basis for a range of possible applications among others including field robots. The transmission series GK can be used to drive and, if required, steer smaller field robots on all wheels. The technology is derived from ZF forklift applications, has been tried and tested over many years, and only needs to be adapted to off-road requirements.
For larger self-propelled vehicles, ZF offers wheel drives from the eTDW transmission series. Similar to counterbalanced trucks in the logistics sector, field robots are moved and controlled by counter-rotating wheel motors
Ideally, the farming of the future should not only be climate neutral, but it should also operate safely and efficiently. To ensure this, the company is already developing future oriented technologies today and demonstrates once more its aspiration as a technology leader with system capability.
Technologies for environment perception – ZF ProWave : Autonomous self-driving vehicles, such as field robots, require efficient and reliable sensors that are designed for use in the field. A highresolution ZF ProWave full-range radar (Fig. 10_ProWave Imaging Radar) and an eDCU (electronic drive control unit) with the corresponding computing power tailored to the application complete the overall ZF system for these applications together with an inverter and, if necessary, an ePTO.
Intelligent connectivity of vehicles and attachments – ZF ProAI and ProConnect: ZF shows how vehicles and implements can be intelligently connected and how new communication technologies/platforms can make life easier for vehicle manufacturers and farmers. The ZF ProAI supercomputer and the ZF ProConnect connectivity platform form the basis for this, the company said in a media release.