VTT and Hydroline smarten-up products business
Finland’s leading hydraulic cylinder manufacturer Hydroline is picking the brains of VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, to develop networked and intelligent products that transition Hydroline from a product-centric to a service-based business model.
The new four-year Tekes-funded collaboration project launched in spring aims to build a digital platform for Hydroline to use in life-cycle management and in-service maintenance of hydraulic cylinders, shifting the company’s focus from products to selling services.
Hydraulic cylinders are extensively used in heavy machinery due to their excellent power density, reliability and user-friendliness, and by applying to them the latest in artificial intelligence and machine learning the product itself becomes a service.
“VTT‘s broad competence and ability to pool together the expertise needed for the project make them almost a one-stop shop for us,” comments Manu Leinonen, vice president, Design and R&D from Hydroline.
The project follows up on previous EU-funded collaboration between VTT and Hydroline that culminated in the Hydroline SCOUT life-cycle tracker launched in spring, which collects usage data from hydraulic cylinders to ensure they are serviced before an unexpected fault occurs.
“Co-operation with VTT has helped the company to modernise its products and business and therefore enabled the company to become a service provider within its network,” explains Erja Turunen, executive vice president, Smart Industry and Energy Systems from VTT.