Since the company’s founding in 1918, Parker has considered innovation in the motion control industry a key component of their identity. Often, this leads to involvement in very exciting initiatives in other industries.
One recent example of Parker’s tradition of innovation in practice is their involvement in the BLOODHOUND project. This project involves the design and testing of the BLOODHOUND Supersonic Car, which is expected to succeed in breaking the world land speed record of 763 miles per hour set in 1997 (a project Parker also participated in). Powered by a Rolls-Royce jet engine, a cluster of Nammo hybrid rockets, and a supercharged Jaguar engine, the car is expected to travel 1 mile per 3.6 seconds and reach a top speed of 800 mph. A special 12-mile-long, 3-mile wide, perfectly flat, desert runway in South Africa has been chosen as the site of the final test, to take place in 2016 if all goes as planned.
Parker is contributing several hydraulic technologies to the BLOODHOUND car, including equipment designed to store backup hydraulic power and assist vehicle stability. However, Parker’s most important contribution will be the braking mechanism for the car. The car will be slowed by twin Parker cylinders activating airbrake doors, which will then produce enough drag on the car to slow it to a stop. The expected load of the cylinders is 5 tonnes per door, but the Parker cylinders are capable of supporting up to 7 tonnes per door.
According to the car’s driver, the rapid deceleration produced by the airbrake system will be about 60 mph per second, equivalent to about 3Gs of force. “It will be un comfortable,” he said. “Most people would call this a crash.” Of course for this car, stopping is an afterthought—it’s the speed that counts.
Just because Parker takes pride in innovation by no means signals that their products are “buggy” or temperamental as often occurs with new technology in other industries. On the contrary, Parker parts are rigorously tested—both on a design level and on a manufacturing level—to ensure that they will perform as promised in consumers’ equipment.
If you are interested in incorporating some of Parker’s innovative hydraulic parts into your equipment, please reach out to Bernell Hydraulics. As an authorized ParkerStore, we have lots of certified Parker parts in stock and we can fulfil your order fast with in store pickup, on site delivery, or worldwide shipping.