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Fairground Rides Thrill with Hydraulics

A white-knuckle ride is fun and safe at theme parks around the world with hydraulic and electric drive and control system...

El Volador  is currently thrilling visitors at the Bellewaerde Theme Park in Belgium and other places around the globe. This latest ride consists of a narrow tower with a horizontally spinning gondola, which holds up to 40 passengers and twists around the tower right up to the top at around 20m high. Then, the hot-blooded El Volador displays its temperament and delivers a thrill: The entire tower can be tipped by more than 60 degrees, while the gondola continues to spin around its own axle. Throughout all this, the big bird’s head at the top of the tower always points down toward the ground -- as if it is trying to peck at the surrounding audience. Then, the giant bird re-erects itself and tips to the other side, like a colossal pendulum.

With movements like these, the El Volador poses an enormous challenge with regard to control and drive technology. The manufacturer mastered this problem using technology from Rexroth.

During the design and construction, HUSS Park Attractions GmbH commissioned the Rexroth Dutch subsidiary in Boxtel with the delivery of the entire hydraulic and electric drive and control technology.

And this paid off during the development of the El Volador. In close cooperation with the customer, Rexroth revised its design and integrated two opposed drive cylinders.

Rexroth in Boxtel has a great deal of experience in the entertainment industry and can offer maximum customer focus. For the passengers, this means being able to safely enjoy an exceptional experience. “The feeling you get when the gondola turns and the pole leans is tremendous. It is as though you’re flying,” reports Marc Mulders, Project Manager at Rexroth in Boxtel.

One-Stop Solution

The ongoing project design and construction combined the know-how of various business units at Boxtel. "In addition to components, we also offer complete, one-stop solutions. Thus, we were able to gear the entire drive and control system to the stringent TÜV safety requirements and construct and install it accordingly," says Mulders. "This saved our customer a lot of work."

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