First Zoomlion excavators roll off 'intelligent' assembly line

Chinese equipment manufacturer Zoomlion has produced the first excavators at its new intelligent production facility in Changsha, Hunan Province.
Loading, Hauling & Excavation / January 12, 2021
By Liam McLoughlin
The new facility uses 100 robots to deliver spare parts during the production process
The new Zoomlion facility uses 100 robots to deliver spare parts during the production process

The first excavator rolled off the assembly line on December 31, 2020 at the Intelligent Excavator Manufacturing Park in Zoomlion Smart Industrial City.

The 20-tonne and 48-tonne excavators coming off the new assembly line were manufactured in an intelligent workshop with an area of 36,000m2. Eschewing conventional forklifts, more than 100 intelligent transport robots deliver over 9,000 spare parts instantly across the workshop, as well as other industrial robots to increase automation and intelligent production.

"The Park was designed in accordance with the highest international standards, fully implementing the concepts of intelligence, digitisation and ecological sustainability and has the most intelligent, flexible and precise intelligent factories and unmanned production lines," said Zhang Chunxin, Zoomlion chairman and CEO.

The "invisible intelligence" is reflected in the Park's production process, from operation and management through to the convergence of intelligent logistics and production scheduling, industrial AI, digital twinning, industrial internet and big data technologies with the Park's management and control system.

Zoomlion says the effort will realise digital and transparent manufacturing and enable the intelligent factories to reduce R&D cycle, operational costs and energy consumption while improving production efficiency significantly.

The Park will provide strong support for Zoomlion's excavator machinery sector and upon full completion the industrial park – valued at CNY30bn (US$45.87bn) – will reach an annual manufacturing capacity of 50,000 of all types of intelligent excavators, with one excavator rolling off the assembly line every six minutes.

Zoomlion officially launched its Smart Industrial City factory cluster project in January 2019 with a total investment of 100bn yuan (US$15.29bn). The City is laid out with four major machinery sectors of concrete, construction cranes, aerial working platform and excavation, four spare parts centres, six national innovation platforms and several testing and incubation bases for intelligent agricultural machinery, AI and other R&D programmes. The Intelligent Excavator Manufacturing Park is the first constructed park in the City.

Upon full completion, Zoomlion says the City will become the world's largest and most comprehensive industrial base of construction machinery, taking the lead as a high-efficiency factory, ecological garden and intelligent city.

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