A prototype of a fast switching valve designed for a digital hydraulic transmission has been manufactured and experimentally tested. The valve is an annular seat valve composed of a plunger connected with a direct electromagnetic moving coil actuator as the force producing element. Based on an elaborate optimization method the valve is designed to maximize the efficiency of a digital hydraulic motor targeted to a wind turbine transmission system. The optimisation method comprises a mathematical framework which predicts a valve switching time of approximately 1 ms with a peak actuator input power of 10 kW during switching (mean of approximately 250 W) and a pressure loss below 0.5 bar at 600 l/min. The main goal of this article is validate parts of the mathematical framework based on a series of experiments. Furthermore, this article aims to document the experience gained from the experimental work and to study and assess a moving coil actuators suitability for the application.

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