The improvement of the energy efficiency is an important topic for off-highway working vehicle developers and manufacturers. New energy efficient technologies, e.g. a hybrid power transmission with an energy recovery feature, have been introduced. However, currently most of the working vehicles are using more conventional technologies. Human operators have an effect on the overall efficiency of the vehicles. The research of the human effect is difficult and expensive using the conventional research methods. A real-time simulation and virtual reality (VR) technology have developed fast recently. A VR-based real-time simulator is a powerful low-cost tool and enables a several novel research methods. The aim of this study is to find the suitability of the VR-based simulator to find the effect of a human operator on the energy consumption of the working hydraulics of off-highway working vehicles. Experimental tests are carried out using human-in-the-loop simulation in an immersive VR-environment. The vehicle used for the case study is an underground mining loader. The results show that the proposed method is valid to find the values for the energy consumption and energy efficiency of a working hydraulics. A variation in the energy efficiency of the working hydraulics was found. The variation correlates with the operator’s driving style. With a larger group of operators the effect of a human operator on the energy consumption can be defined.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.