Software design as part of the electrifying machinery industry

Written by Mika Sorri
Head of Electrification

With the electrification of the machine industry, the need for new skills has increased. When the core of a product is no longer the mechanical or hydraulic power of a diesel engine but pure electricity, we need experts in new fields who understand both electricity and the varying applications of machines.

The software is customized depending on the mechanical structure of the machines and the matching of different components into the software. Customized software allows you to stand out from your competitors, increasing the added value of the machine. Electrical components are generally commercial components with the largest coverage left to their manufacturer. Without software, the manufacturer of the machine would easily be left with only the iron priced per kilo and the assembly work.

Electrification and Software Design

Software design requires knowledge of how the machine works and what is done with it. For example, if the coder programming the harvester operation has not visited the forest, it may be difficult to internalize what is required from the machine in the work. We know that a harvester has to move smoothly through the forest and cut and stack trees skillfully for the next step of the process, but do we know what this means to the requirements of the machine in uneven terrain and in varying conditions?

In addition to this, electrification also requires easy learning and teaching to use the machine. It is no longer just about how quickly a harvester can cut down and cut the branches of trees. Design also considers various variables. These include minimizing the differences between drivers in how the machine is operated or balancing the production time between drivers. The lack of skilled drivers can also be minimized by ease of use and automated operations.

Electric machinery in use

Although the price of electric machines is not yet at a fully competitive level compared to large-volume combustion engines, there are cases where electricity already wins.

At the forefront of electric-powered machinery, the change is being made by the mining industry. The cost of ventilation of underground mines is one of the largest individual expenses of a mine. The need for ventilation can be substantially reduced by removing internal combustion engine-powered machines from the mine. The savings that can be achieved are greater than their long-term costs.

Urban trucks are also being electrified. Distribution, garbage, and concrete trucks drive a manageable route and return to the depot for the night. As the bus transportation has already proved, is electrified battery powered vehicle perfect for this type of journey.