Irugasa on a par with advanced motion control systems

13 July 2021

From its beginnings as the UK arm of IKUSI, a Spanish-based radio control manufacturer, which was then integrated into Danfoss group in 2018, Irugasa Power Solutions has been providing remote control expertise to the UK market for over 25 years.

Its focus is on providing products and services to the lifting industry and in recent years to the growing mobile machinery sector. It also lends itself to bespoke solutions for material handling, utilities, or working with its hydraulic partners in the Danfoss distribution network.

Recently, the company has diversified its portfolio with products which fall under the ‘Safety and Load Management’ part of the business and announced it has partnered with PaR Systems to further drive success for its ExpertOperator (EO) customers in the UK and Ireland.

EO is a hardware module that intercepts pendent commands – converts them into expert commands – and then issues the modified commands to motor drives, allowing crane operators to act like experts. Cable sway is eliminated; efficiency and safety are increased.

On top of this, additional features can be incorporated into the technology to increase safety and productivity by mitigating side load and snag conditions (CraneVision), programming complex move sequences (AutoMove), and creating no-fly zones to protect sensitive equipment, walkways, or other regions (SafeMove).

“Our solutions can be a relatively simple mechanical overload from our Airpes range, sway control via Danfoss Drives, load management by Crane Mounted Camera, or more complex requirements satisfied by an exciting product from our newly established partnership with PaR Systems from North America,” said Michael Ainsworth, sales and marketing director, Irugasa Power Solutions.

“Customers today are now far more focused on condition monitoring, asset life tracking and receiving live feedback on the behaviour of their assets. We now provide products that monitor crane usage, track design life and usage activity. Our major strength is that these product ranges are not dependent or tied to any specific crane manufacturer and we can provide solutions irrespective of the manufacturer.

“This market will continue to grow, and we are continually developing product partnerships that meet the requirement for better asset management.”

Ainsworth added the diversification in its product range is guided by the demands from its customers and its products, particularly the remote-control ranges, are fast developing to become ‘smarter’ with the interface between the operator and the asset becoming bi-directional, providing more functionality and safety.

“I have always been fascinated by the diverse nature of our customers’ businesses. To see our products or solutions in action is personally very satisfying. Solving customers’ problems is our main aim and to achieve this you must meet them, understand what they do and where your products fit into that process to deliver maximum safety and value,” he said.

“One of our frustrations is finding a general lack of knowledge regarding the very strict rules and regulations covering the use of remote-control equipment on cranes and hosting products.

“Of even more concern to us is the continual introduction of full remote-control systems that are non-compliant to the legal required safety standards for use in Britain and the EU.

“Since the 2017 introduction of the mandatory requirements of the Radio Control Directive (RED2014/53/EU), we are proud to have worked closely with LEEA (Lifting Equipment Engineers Association) offering them advice in updating their remote-control guidance documentation.

“Safety is paramount and the RED2014/53/EU directs the legal responsibility for the use of safe and compliant remote-control equipment on lifting equipment, directly to the asset owner, not the installer or manufacturer.

“How many crane owners or crane service providers are aware of the rules and regulations involved in the critical safety component on a crane, the radio control?”

Ainsworth added, prior to Covid Irugasa noticed an increase of counterfeit and non-complaint products entering the UK marketplace, particularly in the remote-control sector. Post Covid with the further need to decrease costs, this will naturally increase the use of dangerous counterfeit products. An example being counterfeit batteries that are not only dangerous as an item but can seriously damage the product it is powering.

“We have always been aware of the need for sustainability and pride ourselves on setting an example, being that as a business we generate very little waste and the vast majority of that is easily recyclable,” he said.

“In terms of the future, we are embracing digital technologies and we have recently developed a cloud-based system giving our customers the ability to monitor the journey of their products returned to our Service Department for repair or modernisation.”