The construction industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation, with activity driven by an increased focus on environmental sustainability and workplace safety, and the growing importance of technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics. In the last three years alone, there have been over 425,000 patents filed and granted in the construction industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Innovation in construction: regeneration control hydraulics. Buy the report here.

Smarter leaders trust GlobalData

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilizing and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

80+ innovations will shape the construction industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the construction industry using innovation intensity models built on over 232,000 patents, there are 80+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, self-healing concrete, waterproof floor drains, and construction 3D printing are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. Smart glazing, regeneration control hydraulics, and floating breakwaters are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are wall surface temperature controls and embossed floor panels, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for the construction industry

Regeneration control hydraulics is a key innovation area in construction

Regeneration control hydraulics refer to the use of hydraulic systems in controlling machines and vehicles that utilize different types of equipment in various operating states. The system comprises pumps that deliver hydraulic oil to various components, including hydraulic actuators, which control the movement of the machine or vehicle. The system also includes components for detecting load pressure and controlling pump output based on the load detected.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 160+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established construction companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of regeneration control hydraulics.

Key players in regeneration control hydraulics – a disruptive innovation in the construction industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.   

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.  

Patent volumes related to regeneration control hydraulics

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Hitachi 3560 Unlock Company Profile
Caterpillar 2239 Unlock Company Profile
Komatsu 2230 Unlock Company Profile
Sumitomo Heavy Industries 1277 Unlock Company Profile
AB Volvo 904 Unlock Company Profile
Mitsui Chemicals 764 Unlock Company Profile
Kobe Steel 656 Unlock Company Profile
Doosan Infracore 553 Unlock Company Profile
The Weir Group 550 Unlock Company Profile
KYB 453 Unlock Company Profile
Kawasaki Heavy Industries 394 Unlock Company Profile
Kubota 370 Unlock Company Profile
Metalogenia Research & Technologies 197 Unlock Company Profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 164 Unlock Company Profile
CR 140 Unlock Company Profile
Deere 129 Unlock Company Profile
Combi Wear Parts 120 Unlock Company Profile
Yanmar (Tokyo Office) 110 Unlock Company Profile
Kawasaki Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha 96 Unlock Company Profile
CNH Industrial 90 Unlock Company Profile
Doosan 88 Unlock Company Profile
Eaton 88 Unlock Company Profile
Black Cat Blades 88 Unlock Company Profile
YANMAR POWER TECHNOLOGY 87 Unlock Company Profile
Parker Hannifin 78 Unlock Company Profile
Liebherr-International 78 Unlock Company Profile
J C Bamford Excavators 70 Unlock Company Profile
Sandvik 59 Unlock Company Profile
Nabtesco 54 Unlock Company Profile
Danfoss 42 Unlock Company Profile
Ihc Holland Ie 34 Unlock Company Profile
HUSCO International 34 Unlock Company Profile
Shandong Heavy Industry Group 31 Unlock Company Profile
Dana 30 Unlock Company Profile
Sany Group 24 Unlock Company Profile
Linde Hydraulics 24 Unlock Company Profile
Microsoft 22 Unlock Company Profile
SIMCO Mining Products and Services 21 Unlock Company Profile
Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering 18 Unlock Company Profile
SSAB 18 Unlock Company Profile
Zeppelin-Stiftung 18 Unlock Company Profile
Trinity Industries 17 Unlock Company Profile
XCMG Construction Machinery 17 Unlock Company Profile
NOK 17 Unlock Company Profile
Harnischfeger Technologies 16 Unlock Company Profile
SungBo Industrial 15 Unlock Company Profile
Takeuchi Mfg. 15 Unlock Company Profile
Bosch Rexroth 14 Unlock Company Profile
Cutting Edges Equipment Parts 14 Unlock Company Profile
Atlaspco 13 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

One of the leading patent filers in regeneration control hydraulics technologies is Volvo’s subsidiary Volvo Construction Equipment (CE), a manufacturer of construction equipment. One of the key innovations by Volvo CE is the development of a device for controlling a machine in various operating states by means of a switchable system of hydraulic components. Further Volvo CE innovations include a method and device for controlling a vehicle's hydraulic system by limiting its maximum power consumption and controlling the movement of a flow-regulating valve, and a hydraulic system for a machine that uses multiple pumps to control the load pressure at different points and control the pump output based on the load detected.

In terms of application diversity, Linde Hydraulics leads the pack, while Danfoss and Robert Bosch Stiftung stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Combi Wear Parts held the top position, followed by SSAB and The Weir Group.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the construction industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Construction.

Premium Insights


The gold standard of business intelligence.

Blending expert knowledge with cutting-edge technology, GlobalData’s unrivalled proprietary data will enable you to decode what’s happening in your market. You can make better informed decisions and gain a future-proof advantage over your competitors.


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.