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Products and solutions Mar 28, 2018 11:00 AM

Agrishow 2018: thyssenkrupp introduces new Berco undercarriage for sugarcane harvesters and reinforces its aftermarket operations

• The system, which guarantees more reliability and resistance to wear for machines in cane fields, is supplied to both OEMs and the aftermarket

• The new Berco system is more cost-effective and is compatible with different brands and harvester models

According to the Sugarcane Technology Center (CTC), in less than a decade, the Center-South region of Brazil has more than doubled the mechanization index in its sugarcane harvest, from 47% in 2008 to 97% of the area harvested in 2015. It is estimated that in São Paulo, Goiás and Minas Gerais, states that have the largest concentration of sugar and ethanol mills, there are now more than 10,000 sugarcane harvesters in operation. It is in this context that thyssenkrupp has invested to expand its portfolio of products for the sugar-energy sector. At the 25th edition of Agrishow, to be held from April 30 to May 4 in Ribeirão Preto (São Paulo state), the company will introduce its new Berco undercarriage for sugarcane harvesters.

Recently launched on the Brazilian market, the system is for new machines and for repair and maintenance, serving both original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and spare parts distributors. "The mechanized harvesting of sugarcane has made the sector more sustainable and safer, reducing production costs and conserving planted areas. To reach this level, machines have been - and are being - used intensely in the cane fields. They require constant monitoring and maintenance and it is estimated that about 40% of the costs of maintaining a cane harvester go on rolling stock," says Rissaldo Laurenti Jr., sales manager for thyssenkrupp Berco line in South America.

Combined with the trust in and tradition of the Berco brand, the new undercarriage from thyssenkrupp offers maximum efficiency and reliability in a single system. The new product, which can now be used in different brands and models of harvester, is more resistant to fatigue. "For the end customer, this represents better performance and availability of the equipment, with an opportunity to reduce operating costs," explains Paolo Malfatti, product support and product development consultant for the thyssenkrupp Berco line in South America. He highlights that the cost per hour worked is an important indicator to be considered when choosing the rolling stock that will be used in a harvester.

The gains in durability and performance in the new undercarriage are due to a number of structural and design improvements. The track links have been redesigned and have a higher effective height; that is, a greater height between undercarriage and pin eye, which guarantees greater wear resistance and longer link life. In addition, the components subjected to the tensile and torsion loads have been reinforced in order to guarantee greater durability for the assembly.

Below are the main differentials of the new Berco undercarriage for sugarcane harvesters:

• Extended lifespan thanks to higher track links

• Extended structural durability thanks to completely redesigned track links

• Reinforcement in the region of the bushing hole side for greater tensile strength

• Reinforced structure for high resistance to torsional loads

• Higher pitch between undercarriage and pin eye for longer track link life

• Bushings with external diameters of 60 mm

• Compatible with different harvester brands and models

Global Leadership

The new undercarriage for sugarcane harvesters is the result of a series of engineering studies and research by thyssenkrupp. A global reference in the development and manufacture of rolling stock, through the Berco line the company offers a wide portfolio of chains, rollers, drive wheels, guide wheels and shoes, among other components and subassemblies that form the rolling stock systems applied to heavy machinery such as bulldozers, harvesters and tractors used in agribusiness, construction and mining.

Founded in Italy almost a century ago, Berco was acquired by thyssenkrupp in 1999 and has established itself as a global leader in the supply of rolling stock for heavy machinery. The brand's products are produced in factories in Copparo and Castelfranco Veneto, Italy, Campo Limpo Paulista, Brazil, Hyderabad, India, and Waukesha, in the USA.

In a recent global move, thyssenkrupp’s Undercarriages business unit, which encompasses Berco's operations, was integrated into the Forging & Machining unit. This merger paved the way for the creation of thyssenkrupp Forged Technologies, one of the largest forged materials companies in the world. Globally, the new structure employs approximately 7,000 people in 18 operating units, distributed among five regions, and has revenues of over € 1 billion.