Hadley introduced the company’s SmartValve electronic height control system at the Technology & Maintenance Council’s Annual Meeting in Nashville this week.
Previously, electronic height control systems have required several separate components: the valve manifold itself, an external sensor, and the associated electronics. Hadley’s SmartValve combines these devices into one simplified and compact solution, fitting within the same envelope as a mechanical height control valve.
“The SmartValve is based on Hadley’s proven Smart Air Management System technology used for more than 10 years in rugged specialty vehicle operations”, said Bob Dubsky, President. “We are confident that this cost-effective, integrated system will be quickly adopted by the mainstream Class 8 markets, because SmartValve’s wide-ranging benefits are tailored specifically to them.”
Drop-and-Hook Made Faster, Easier, Safer
SmartValve installed on the drive axle suspension saves time and money in a variety of common drop-and-hook situations by raising the tractor frame over ride height. There is no need to crank the landing gear as often or as far, and fewer trips out of the cab are required for adjustment.
Extensive testing at the Bosch Automotive Proving Grounds showed in high-frequency drop-and-hook, SmartValve saves each driver a week’s worth of time, every year.
If the trailer is too low, the driver can raise the tractor frame over ride height, thus lifting the trailer and reducing the effort needed to crank the gear.
Insurance industry officials agree that raising and lowering landing gear is one of the top sources of injuries in trucking. SmartValve eliminates these injuries by reducing the strenuous effort required to crank the landing gear. Fleets will benefit through reduced workers’ compensation premiums.
Further, the company says its SmartValve Electronic Height Control System can also help fleets save fuel through reduced compressor run time and avoidance of unnecessary valve actuations.
SmartValve provides OEMs with a tool to design more aerodynamic tractors, which automatically lower vehicle ride heights at highway speeds.
Hadley says it tested this technology at the Bosch Automotive Proving Grounds with extensive SAE J1321 Type II Fuel Economy Testing. The results show a .7 % improvement on the specific tractor model tested at low ride height. With new tractor designs, that could mean savings of $700 — or even more — annually for every tractor in the fleet. A 100 tractor fleet would save 17,500 gallons of diesel every year.