Fluid Power Industry Roadmap

Identifying Fluid Powers’s Pre-Competitive Research Needs

The NFPA Technology Roadmap describes an industry-wide consensus regarding the pre-competitive research and development needs associated with improving the design, manufacture, and function of fluid power components and systems.

The research and development agenda it describes is focused on advancements that will help the fluid power industry meet the future needs of its customers, expand into new markets, and attract the best and brightest students to the field.

It is used by the NFPA and the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP) to guide their research efforts, by NFPA members and other industry partners to inform decisions about research partnerships and product development, and by academic, government, and other organizations that wish to pursue research and development projects of importance to the fluid power industry.

It is updated every two years under the guidance and leadership of the NFPA Roadmap Committee. 

Current Technology Roadmap Update Process and Timeline
Date Activity Resources
January 8, 2019 Introductory webinar to present update process and timeline Webinar Slides
Webinar Recording 
January 28, 2019 Customer Driver and Capability Improvement Briefing Materials sent to Roadmap  Committee                                                                                                                             Briefing Materials
March 1, 2019                           

In-person meeting at FPIC Seminar to:

  • Identify and rank Customer Drivers
  • Identify, rank, and connect Capability Improvements to  Customer Drivers
  • Discuss possible Research Areas & Targets

Agenda Materials             

Agenda Materials Review Recording

Meeting Report

April 2019 Working Groups identified for each Capability Improvement  
April 2019 Research Area and Target Briefing Materials sent to Roadmap Committee

Survey Results

Research Index

May 2019

Working Group conference calls to:

  • Identify and rank Research Areas for each Capability Improvement
  • Identify and rank Research Targets for each Research Area

Conference Call Minutes:

Working Group A 

Working Group B

Working Group C 

Working Group D 

Working Group E

Working Group F

Working Group G 

Working Group H

June 2019

In-person meeting at FPIC Seminar to:

  • Review Research Areas and Targets for each Capability Improvement
  • Remove redundancies, improve synergies, and prioritize Research Areas and Targets

Agenda Materials

Meeting Report

July 2019 Draft Roadmap sent for review and comment  
August 2019 Final Roadmap presented at August 12-14 IEOC  
August 2019 Final Roadmap published  



The 2017 NFPA Technology Roadmap identified seven areas of pre-competitive research challenge:

  • Increasing the energy efficiency of fluid power components and systems
  • Improving the reliability of fluid power components and systems (e.g., increasing up-time, reducing maintenance requirements, making fluid power safe and easy to use)
  • Reducing the size and weight of fluid power components and systems while maintaining or increasing their power output
  • Building “smart” fluid power components and systems (i.e., ones that perform self-diagnostics and troubleshooting and that integrate easily with “plug and play” functionality)
  • Reducing the environmental impact of fluid power components and systems (e.g., lowering noise, eliminating leaks)
  • Improving and applying the energy storage capabilities of fluid power components and systems
  • Improving and widening the scope of applications for fast, accurate and cost effective fluid power control.

Download the Report

2017 FPAMC Manufacturing Roadmap 
An additional report was also published in 2017 by the Fluid Power Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (FPAMC). That report, and the FPAMC, represents a roadmapping effort, led by the CCEFP and funded by a federal grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), to define a set of enabling manufacturing technologies and the research necessary to better apply those technologies to the manufacture of fluid power components. 
Those enabling manufacturing technologies are:
  • Coatings
  • Micromachining
  • Composites and engineering plastics
  • Sintered metals
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Batch free heat treating
  • Robotics
  • Hybrid manufacturing
  • Metrology
  • In-process sensing, feedback and control

Download the Report

U.S. Department of Energy Study on Energy Consumption of Fluid Power Systems 
The U.S. Department of Energy has published a study estimating the total amount of energy consumed by fluid power systems in the United States. NFPA participated in the study and uses it to help frame new technology development initiatives for the industry.
Download the Report

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