Caterpillar is launching a new smart creep feature for its Cat D3 series skid steer loaders and CTLs for operating Cat cold planer and wheel saw attachments, and it is also expanding Cat Command for Loading to the series.
Smart creep senses the load on the attachment and automatically adjusts the drive command to keep the cold planer or wheel saw running at the most productive speed.
A combination of attachment sensors and proprietary software optimally balances attachment load and machine speed to maximize productivity. By continually sensing the load on the attachment, smart creep increases machine speed when encountering less resistance and automatically slows the machine when encountering higher load. Engine load remains constant, while the operator can monitor hydraulic pressure on the in-cab display panel.
Smart creep takes the guess work out of setting the right creep speed for operating the attachment. Without the aid of this feature, setting creep speed too fast can lead to stalling the attachment, and too slow of speed results in productivity loss, the company says. Smart creep software smoothly and efficiently determines the optimal machine speed for cutting conditions.
With the new feature from Caterpillar, the operator needs only to activate the standard creep control system and set the maximum creep speed on the advanced display inside the cab. Once the tool engages the cut, smart creep measures load on the attachment and adjusts the drive command automatically as cutting begins. In the event of the cutter jamming or stalling, an auto reverse feature within smart creep quickly changes machine direction to allow the tool to clear the jam.
Targeted availability for smart creep on Cat D3 SSL and CTL machines is the third quarter of 2022. A field installation kit consisting of sensors and machine software for operating the new feature will be made available for existing fleet loaders and attachments.
Cat Command for Loading
Cat Command provides joystick-controlled remote operation of the skid steer and CTL models to increase safety and productivity when operating in challenging and potentially hazardous environments.
Cat Command for Loading for skid steer and compact track loaders will be available in two configurations – line-of-sight at the jobsite and non-line-of-sight operating via a remote station located off-site. By allowing the user to comfortably control the machine from a safe location, Command maintains high machine productivity in difficult operating environments such as stevedoring, steel mill blast furnaces, industrial and waste, demolition, and site decommissioning.
A dealer-installed field kit makes any Cat D3 skid steer or compact track loader model Command-ready. The line-of-sight system includes indicator lights, microphone, wireless receiver, and antennas installed on the cabin roof with the Command activation switch mounted behind a lockable door with ground-level access. The non-line-of-sight system adds front, rear, and side cameras for 360-degree viewing. Since Command controls are integrated with machine electronics, users experience the same control response as they would operating inside the cab, allowing for productivity to be maintained from a distance.
Line-of-sight Command for Loading operation comes complete with a lightweight, compact control console supported by a comfortable shoulder harness. Machine controls such as machine startup/shutdown, bucket rack/dump and lift/lower, rpm, horn, creep control, and auxiliary hydraulic functionality are easily accessed through the ergonomic Command console control layout.
Two different line-of-sight consoles will be available to meet customer need, each providing different levels of functionality and control with complex hydromechanical attachments. Operating range for both line-of-sight Command consoles extend up to 984 feet to allow for convenient remote operation.
To ensure the user maintains machine control at all times, integrated Cat electronics activate several safety features to stop all machine movements if: the All-stop switch is pressed; Command stop switch is activated; wireless communication is lost; a severe fault is detected; or the Command console is tilted more than 60 degrees from normal operating position.
The non-line-of-sight Command for Loading solution includes a modular, customized Command station that positions users in a familiar and comfortable seated position that simulates traditional machine control. One user can connect to multiple machines from a single station, controlling one machine at a time. The station is also compatible with other Command offerings for Cat equipment, such as excavators, dozers, and small wheel loaders.