Headline-grabbing loading

A major global manufacturer's new cutting-edge digital solutions for quarry and large construction sites, two exciting next-generation loader series from leading sector players, and eye-catching electric-powered wheeled loading shovels from a top Chinese manufacturer start work at a major UK building materials supplier's key London facility. Guy Woodford & Liam McLoughlin report
Loading, Hauling & Excavation / November 14, 2023
By Guy Woodford & Liam McLoughlin
Komatsu has unveiled its all-new digital solutions for quarry and large construction sites. Pic: Komatsu

Komatsu has unveiled its all-new digital solutions for quarry and large construction sites. Using these solutions, customers can further improve jobsite safety and operational efficiency. Whether you want to increase production, identify bottlenecks or quickly collect reliable machine and production data, the Japanese off-highway machinery giant says it has the ideal digital solutions. 

Komatsu 2
Komatsu's Operator Guidance Monitor (OGM) provides real-time feedback to your operator. Pic: Komatsu


Thanks to the one-second logger data Komatsu quarry machines collect, a fully configurable dashboard is offered for Komatsu quarry fleets. Using the factory-fit telematics hardware, data collection is made easy. Figures such as fuel consumption, ton/hr, idling times, error codes and machine health are presented to you when, how and where you want.


Komatsu's Operator Guidance Monitor (OGM) provides real-time feedback to your operator using an in-cab tablet, which collects data directly from the machine. Applicable for Komatsu's bigger rigid dump trucks, OGM will automatically evaluate major KPIs (key performance indicators), such as payload, cycle times, fuel rate, idling and productivity immediately after each cycle. Operators will get alerts in case of overspeeding, sudden braking or other areas for attention. Komatsu says you will improve your operators' skills and awareness, and the quarry's safety and overall cost will also improve. Due to a series of back-office dashboards, quarry management can follow up on production, fuel consumption and machine use.

Komatsu 3
Komatsu's Smart Quarry Site will help you understand and control every aspect of your quarry exploitation area. Pic: Komatsu


In the coming months, Komatsu will introduce Smart Quarry Site, an all-in-one fleet management system for your quarry. Smart Quarry Site offers a complete package to follow up and control your multi-brand fleet using an in-cab-screen and CAN bus connectivity. Smart Quarry Site offers the flexibility to be used at every company level thanks to a real-time overview of your machines, configurable PDF or CSV reports, API service, and a series of dashboards. Features such as operator IDs, pre-start checks, overspeed alerts and a mesh network between machines will increase the jobsite safety. Komatsu says Smart Quarry Site will help you understand and control every aspect of your quarry exploitation area. Goals such as CO2 reduction, cost control, saving labour hours, controlled machine downtime and increased production and safety are "within reach", says the manufacturer.


As part of its commitment to net-zero, UK-based Aggregate Industries has deployed its first electric-powered loading shovel.

LiuGong 1
London Concrete and LiuGong representatives with the new LiuGong 856HE. Pic: Aggregate Industries



The LiuGong 856HE wheeled loader is now operating at the Aggregate Industries London Concrete plant in Bow, East London. The 856HE is claimed to be the world's first commercially available battery electric loader and is the first fully electric wheeled loader that LiuGong has supplied in Europe.


Oliver Keates, European product manager for the LiuGong Machinery wheeled loader range, says that more than 2,000 similar LiuGong electric wheeled loaders have already been deployed in China. He adds of the 856HE loader: "This machine is suitable for a range of functionalities including quarrying applications, batching plants, recycling of materials and hopper loading."


At Bow, the 856HE loading shovel will be used to load aggregates from the site's railhead and will also be used on the London Concrete Readymix plant to keep the site tidy and to manage stockpiles.


The 21,000kg vehicle has a 423kwh lithium iron phosphate battery with a fast charging capability of 1.7 hours. The machine has a 160kw engine and 3.5m3 bucket capacity and can operate for more than 11 hours on full charge. The machine can be charged from 20% to 95% in around 45 minutes using the Kempower-supplied charger at the Bow site. Most importantly, it uses zero fuel, has zero emissions and produces low noise and vibration.


It joins London's first all-electric readymix concrete mixer truck at Bow, a 26-tonne Renault Trucks E-Tech D Wide deployed earlier this year. Electrification of the fleet and plant is central to Aggregate Industries' wider approach to reach net zero before 2050. Kirstin McCarthy, Aggregate Industries' director of sustainability, said: "We are delighted to be working with LiuGong and that we are the first customer in Europe to be deploying this all-electric vehicle.

LiuGong 2
The LiuGong 856HE wheeled loader working with material at Aggregate Industries' London Concrete plant in Bow, East London. Pic: Aggregates Industries


"We have worked closely with the manufacturers to get the specification and testing right, and it is routinely delivering a 10-11 hour shift on full charge and will be a real asset to our operations.


"Aggregate Industries has a clear direction of travel for how we intend to reach zero-emissions before 2050, and as a business that has a lot of vehicles and burns a lot of fuel, electrification of our fleet is a key part of that overall strategy.


"Change begins small and then gathers pace, and we will be rolling out further electric vehicles across the business during the rest of 2023 and 2024 as we move towards low or zero carbon fuels or energy sources."


LiuGong's Keates added: "Working with Aggregate Industries has helped LiuGong to deliver our message of productivity and efficiency with reliability.


"This is a journey that began in 2018 for LiuGong, and we continue to grow and expand our electric fleet of vehicles. More and more companies can now see the benefits these machines bring to businesses, through LiuGong's iLink Telematics, companies are seeing real benefits which are helping them achieve the ambitious targets that have been set by the Government."


A second LiuGong 856 HE is due to be delivered to Aggregate Industries before the end of the year. The first 856 HE currently operating at Bow will then be moved around other Aggregate Industries sites in the UK.


Aggregate Industries launched its Journey to Net Zero Strategy in May this year, outlining how it plans to reach zero emissions before 2050.


Remaining with LiuGong, the manufacturer exhibited its new 52-tonne 952F excavator prototype at the steinexpo quarrying equipment show in Germany.


James Higgs, product specialist at LiuGong Europe, said the machine has been specifically designed for the European quarrying and demolition sectors.

Volvo CE 1
The Volvo CE L90F (pictured), L60F and L70F wheeled loaders for Middle East and Africa customers are being upgraded to the H-Series generation. Pic: Volvo CE


Two prototypes of the 952F excavator are being tested - one at an aggregates recycling facility in Berlin and the other with a LiuGong customer in the UK.

In addition to Europe, LiuGong says the machine suits North American customers. Powered by a 282Kw Cummins X12 engine, the machine could be on the market as early as Q1 2024.


Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) L60F, L70F, and L90F wheeled loaders for Middle East and Africa customers are being upgraded to the H-Series generation with Tier 3 engines this year, ensuring customers get the same powerful and reliable operation as before but with several additional benefits. The new models will, says Volvo CE, increase operator comfort, lifting capacity and fuel efficiency while reducing service costs and wear and tear, resulting in a smooth operator experience on almost any job site.


With this series upgrade, the Volvo L60Gz and L90Gz models will be phased out by the end of 2023.


The H-Series wheeled loaders boast a brand-new look and feel and several performance-enhancing upgrades that can be boosted further when paired with a wide range of optional equipment.


Some of the most noticeable improvements are as much to do with the machine itself as they are to do with the experience of operating it.


Those stepping inside the cab are set to enjoy a much more comfortable and productive work environment thanks to new features such as Rimpull Control, which allows operators to adjust the wheeled loaders' rimpull to match slippery ground conditions, thereby reducing wheel spin and wear and tear, additionally resulting in better fuel efficiency.


The H-Series' Smart Control also balances the energy flow between the hydraulic and the drive train systems, providing the right amount of power for exactly where and when it is needed.


In addition, the upgraded wheeled loaders come with an electrically opened engine hood, slide-out coolers and quick oil change connectors, providing better access to service points and making maintenance routines simple and hassle-free.


Meanwhile, a new optional lock-up torque converter helps increase productivity and fuel efficiency in load and carry applications while reducing operators' fatigue and increasing site productivity.


Another fuel-saving feature is the Eco pedal. When pressing down on the gas pedal, operators will sense a light pushback, indicating they are at the top limit of the economic working range for the engine rpm. Operators then have a choice to stay in this range – and therefore operate most economically – or push beyond this limit if required. All these new functions allow operators to work smarter, not harder, all the while ensuring the maximum uptime for site productivity and greater fuel efficiency.


Customers looking for further uptime can choose from Volvo Services, such as On-Board Weighing and Volvo Co-Pilot, which allow the H-Series to perform accurately, productively and safely.


The upgraded wheeled loaders can be fitted exactly to customers' varying needs thanks to a complete range of options and attachment coverage.

Develon 1
The DX530LC-7M is part of Develon's latest generation of 'DX-7M' tracked excavators. Pic: Develon


Develon, formerly Doosan Construction Equipment, has completed the launch of the 19-strong latest generation' DX-7 M' range of tracked excavators from 2 to 53 tonnes for Tier 2 and Tier 3 markets worldwide. The new excavators are designed for various markets, from construction, rental, recycling, waste processing and utilities to mining and quarrying.


The range models are: the DX27Z-7M and DX35Z-7M 2-3-tonne mini-excavators, DX200A-7M, DX210-7M, DX220LC-7M and DX220AF-7M 20-22-tonne crawler excavators, DX225LC-7M and DX225LCA-7M 22-tonne crawler excavators, DX300LC-7M, DX300LCA-7M, DX360LC-7M and DX360LCA-7M 31-37-tonne crawler excavators, DX400LC-7M, DX450LC-7M and DX450LCA-7M 41-45-tonne crawler excavators, and the DX490LC-7M, DX490LCA-7M, DX530LC-7M and DX530LCA-7M 49-53-tonne crawler excavators.

From the smallest model in the range, the DX27Z-7M 2.8-tonne mini-excavator, to the largest, the DX530LC(A)-7M excavators, the 'DX-7M' models are all said to offer significantly improved performance compared to the previous generation machines. This is due to many enhancements, including more powerful engines and new higher-flow hydraulic systems.


The DX200A-7M 20-tonne excavator and all the larger excavators from the DX300LC(A)-7M upwards incorporate Develon's Virtual Bleed Off (VBO) cutting-edge technology. The VBO system utilises an electronic pressure-controlled pump within a closed-centre hydraulic system for claimed productivity increases of up to 17% and claimed fuel efficiency improvements of up to 32%, depending on the model and the mode selected. The closed-centred main control valve minimises pressure loss, while the electronic pressure-controlled pump manages and optimises engine power more effectively.


Improved feedback to the operator through the joystick results in enhanced machine control and less operator fatigue. The acceleration and deceleration of the excavator workgroup functions are smoother, allowing operators to perform repetitive swinging and digging motions with less jerking movements.


Another feature of most models from 20 tonnes and above that contributes to decreased fuel consumption is the advanced Smart Power Control (SPC) system from Develon. The SPC system controls engine RPM automatically to supply the appropriate torque, depending on workload and speed, to ensure the best fuel efficiency.


The completely redesigned cabs on the DX-7M excavators provide maximum comfort and total control of all aspects of the equipment. Several ventilation and air conditioning options are offered to meet any additional needs.

Develon 2
The new Develon DX225LC-7M at work in a quarry. Pic: Develon


The seat-belt warning alarm system also ensures enhanced safety and the AVM (around view monitor) system is designed to prevent accidents caused by blind spots. Other comfort aspects of the new cabs include a new interior with a dark grey base for a modern look, upgraded heating and ventilation functions for the operator, an eight-inch touchscreen monitor for intuitive operation, a DAB audio (hands-free, Bluetooth), a choice of fabric seat with heating function or leather seat, multipurpose cup holder and storage available, an ergonomic footrest (reduced ankle fatigue), LED cab lights, and a rear sun visor.


The DX200A-7M and DX220AF-7M models have additional reinforcement for claimed exceptional off-road performance. Every key component meets Develon's global standards. In the DX200A-7M, the hydraulic components and the engine tank have been strengthened, and the robust frames and structures are designed to stand up to the rigours of tough workplaces. Similarly, the DX220AF-7M is fully armoured from top to bottom to help maximise uptime on all types of extreme terrain, including forestry work.


Another important feature of the new generation Develon excavator range is the installation as standard of the latest version 3.0 of the Develon Fleet Management system, which provides a telematics management system by collecting data from sensors on the machines. The DX27Z-7M mini-excavator is now the smallest model in the DEVELON range with the successful Develon Fleet Management system.

For more information on companies in this article