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Fri May 20 2022

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Caterpillar rolls out ‘smart creep’ feature

21 Jan Caterpillar is set to launch a new ‘smart creep’ feature for D3 skid steer loaders (SSL) and compact track loaders (CTL) that use its cold planer and wheel saw attachments.

The feature is designed to maximise tool productivity. 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.

Caterpillar said that 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.

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With this new feature, the operator needs only to activate the standard creep control system and set the maximum creep speed on the advanced display inside the cab, it said. 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. Once commercially available, new cold planer and wheel saw purchases will be shipped from the factory with the required hardware installed, and new D3 SSL and CTL models will come ‘smart creep ready’ from the factory.

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