by Harry Aghjian, CEO CMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne
Since 2004, CMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne has hosted a tradeshow and learning symposium every two years for our customers called the Drive for Technology. The Drive for Technology has become known in our region for being a compact, powerful trade show where attendees can learn about new products and technology in an intimate setting. This past April 19-20, the Drive for Technology closed with our highest attendance to date – over 571 customers primarily from Illinois and Wisconsin – and some of the best attendee reviews we have had!
It is encouraging that our customers came from hundreds of miles away to be at the show. We worked hard to combine an information rich event with some fun. Our pig roast and barista bars were examples of the “fun” part. The key for us, however, was the information portion of the two day event.
The Drive for Technology used three channels to impart new products, new theories & new
technologies to our customers: technical seminars, hands-on workshops and a vendor trade show. Using the Internet of Things or, if you prefer, Industry 4.0 as our theme, we highlighted some of the newest technologies known to our industry.
One such example is the Rexroth MLC-H controller. MLC-H is the only open architecture controller that allows the mixing of hydraulic axis and electric servo/stepper axis under one programming environment using a digital SERCOS III interface. The truly revolutionary part of this new technology is its Open Core interface. Open what? One easy example to illustrate Open Core: the MLC-H is open to external devices such as smart phones and tablets. Having an open interface makes the MLC-H a truly future proof technology supporting all the Ethernet-based protocols!
Another example is the OXiStop, OXS from Hydac. Simply put, OXS allows us to shrink hydraulic reservoirs by up to 8x (less oil) and reduce operating costs up to 3x. These are real benefits from products that are brand new to our industry.
Our final mission was to allow our customers to “take with” the key information that they were presented with at the show. We supplied an on-line link from our web site to download 100 +MB of information and data complete with application examples from each technical seminar. Bosch Rexroth, for example, conducted four technical seminars, two workshops and set-up a 40 ft. booth to display their technology. That’s a lot of information, and our customers were able to digitally walk away with everything that they needed at the end of the two day show. That’s what the Drive for Technology is all about!