Enhancing volumetric concrete mixer performance
Joint Cubic3 and University of Liverpool research project increases reliability and service life of mixer trucks
WORKING in partnership with University of Liverpool’s Centre for Global Eco-Innovation, Cubic3 Design and Engineering Ltd have completed a 10-month research project into the lifespan of a range of continuous concrete mixers.
The aim of the programme – which was carried out by with the assistance of the University, a graduate engineer and Cubic3’s suppliers/customers – was to redesign the mixers to achieve a longer service life with minimal maintenance requirements.
Anthony Jones, technical director for Cubic3, said: ‘Having worked in the sector for more than 30 years, we know how important it is to get the job done. Being able to repair on site without workshop facilities is of great importance to us. Many of our customers operate overseas and in remote locations, such as the Algerian desert.’
Modern eco-design strategies were used to find the best opportunities for improvement. In particular, hydraulic, pneumatic, computer and electrical systems, as well as the fabricated structure, were redesigned to achieve:
- Simplified systems with fewer components
- Use of components with a ‘high mean time before failure’ and low maintenance requirements
- Simple fault diagnosis
- ‘Plan B’ fail-safes to compete the job without immediate workshop assistance
- Lower environmental impact as a result of eco-friendly systems and longer lifespan.
Mr Jones concluded: ‘Our new range of Cubic3 continuous concrete mixers have been developed based on our own experience and detailed feedback from machine owners and operators. This project gave us the opportunity to innovate and improve the design and manufacture even further.’