Massey Ferguson’s Dynamic Top Link Control is only in the prototype stage, but earned a citation in the SIMA Innovation Awards.
This top link control system automatically maintains the correct working angle of mounted implements.
Sensors on the tractor continually monitor the tractor and implement’s working angle, front axle height and, using GPS, any inclines in the field.
All these parameters feed into the tractor’s control terminal, which automatically adjusts the hydraulic top link length to maintain the parameters set by the operator.
“Top link setting is the key to ensuring efficient implement operation,” says Guillaume Dutartre, Product Marketing Manager.
“The correct length maintains consistent working depth from the front to back of the machine, which helps to reduce wheel-slip and tine wear.
“This will also improve overall efficiency and save fuel.”
For some machines, such as mounted fertiliser spreaders, the working angle is critical for effective operation.
Tests show that a variance of just a few degrees from the correct setting will disturb the machine’s distribution pattern, resulting in uneven application.
A difference of just two degrees, for example, can result in a 4m reduction in the spreading width, and can disrupt the distribution pattern.
The system will not only compensate for working on slopes, but also the weight of the loaded spreader on the linkage and effects of the front axle suspension.
Hydraulic Top Link Automation is currently a working prototype, and engineers in the Massey Ferguson plant at Beauvais in France are continuing to fine-tune the settings to improve the consistency of its operation.
A date for its introduction is yet to be set.
However, the new Hydraulic Top Link Control will be one of the new features showcased by Massey Ferguson on its stand at the SIMA Show in Paris in February.
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