Sustainability, Efficiency and Technology at IAA Expo

Sustainability, Efficiency and Technology at IAA Expo

IAA 2022 Wrap-up

IAA Transportation is one of the world’s biggest transport exhibitions and the 2022 event has just wrapped up in Hannover.

Held over six jam-packed days, the IAA Transportation expo showcases the most significant technological innovations and concepts from the transport sector, this year presented in a new ‘complete mobility’ concept that includes technology from just about everything on wheels that delivers people or goods.

With more than 1400 exhibitors from over 40 different countries, it was clear that the future of the industry is focused squarely on electric vehicles and alternatives such as hydrogen that aim to heavily reduce CO2 emissions.

Transport industry leaders agree that digitalisation, electrification and automated driving are the megatrends shaping the future of the industry, with a press release from IAA indicating that sustainable innovations are well and truly the future.

“The focus is primarily on sustainable transport solutions – trucks, buses and vans with battery and fuel cell-electric zero-emission drives, as well as reengineering solutions to enable existing fleets to run cleanly. CO2-neutral biofuels and hydrogen combustion concepts are giving the internal combustion engine a new, CO2-free life. Manufacturers of trailers and semi-trailers are also focusing on electrification and are thus contributing to a favourable CO2 footprint of transport fleets, as well as weight-optimised lightweight trailers for road and intermodal use.”

Unicla team at IAA Expo

Unicla’s Efficient New Solutions

After several years confined to our home soil thanks to Covid, it was great to travel internationally and showcase some of Unicla’s latest innovations in person to a wonderfully receptive audience.

The Unicla team showcased our first live version of Unicla eDrive and eConnect, our smart electric compressor and control software which we have been refining for several years.

Mark Mitchell notes that feedback has been extremely positive, with visitors impressed by the high level of control available without the need for any add-on control modules.

“The combination of Unicla eDrive and eConnect has inspired many of our customers, who were surprised to see that this level of performance and efficiency control in a refrigeration circuit is now available onboard at the compressor level.”

Unicla at IAA Expo “We demonstrated a fully operational UD150-48V to new and existing customers from 15 different countries, with immediate interest received from everyone,” adds Mark.

The eDrive compressor offers a cooling capacity from 3 to 14kW with 48Vdc, 72Vdc, 400Vdc and 600Vdc models available. Suitable for use with a wide range of refrigerants including R1234yf and R1234yz, the eDrive offers the smooth and reliable operation that Unicla is renowned for in an all-electric package.

We also showcased the revamped hDrive hydraulic package which also offers multi-refrigerant capability and smooth, quiet operation. With the power to provide full compressor output at idle, the Generation II Hydraulic Drive compressor assembly is compact and easy to fit. The compressor, drive coupling, housing, solenoid and hydraulic motor comes pre-assembled and ready to install, saving substantial time in hydraulic connections.

Of course, the Unicla display wouldn’t be complete without our battle-tested oDrive compressors: the original Unicla A and B Series Open Drive compressors have been impressing system integrators, engineers and technicians for decades by delivering extremely quiet and smooth operation with unbeatable volumetric efficiency.

Neighbouring the Unicla stand at IAA were our friends at Burgaflex, who displayed their latest tubing and hose assemblies for thermal management, battery cooling and hydrogen applications. The Burgaflex Burgaclip system is firmly entrenched as the most reliable flexible hose solution for the HVAC&R industry, and it’s great to see the Burgaflex team continuing to innovate to ensure they have the best solutions for the vehicles and systems of the future.

Innotrans 2022

The Season of Transport Shows

Although IAA was our main focus whilst the Unicla team was in Germany, we also had Rene Le Miere spend a few days at Innotrans, the world’s leading rail expo.

“This wasn’t my first visit to Innotrans, but I’m always incredibly impressed by the sheer number of full-sized trains on display, and the niche suppliers that support the rail sector,” says Rene.

“From wheels to seat fabrics to refrigeration units, there’s a manufacturer for every single component of a train, creating this entire network that supports the rail industry. Innotrans really is the place to be for anything to do with train manufacturing, and in a similar vein, IAA is the must-attend show for all things on wheels.”

Overall, IAA Transportation offered the Unicla team an inspiring and uplifting glimpse into the near future of the transport sector, with VDA President Hildegard Müller capturing the energy of the show in a statement in the IAA daily newsletter:

“The industry is delivering what is needed for a sustainable future and is resolutely driving forward the biggest transformation in its history. In doing so, it is making an important contribution to solving the challenges facing society. The industry has the expertise and the will to combine efficient logistics and optimal sustainability. The transport and logistics industry is now putting innovation on the road, and the mission of climate neutrality is in full swing,” says Hildegard Müller.