Komatsu unveils hybrid-electric excavator at ConExpo


Komatsu has developed a new more fuel efficient hybrid excavator that provides similar or better performance than 36-ton diesel rivals.

The HB3650LC-3 hybrid excavator was unveiled at the ConExpo in Las Vegas this Vegas and the company announced that due to the hybrid and total-vehicle-control systems fuel consumption in the vehicle was been increased by 20%.

Using an electric swing motor, the fully-electric hybrid system captures swing deceleration energy that would otherwise go unused. The energy from each swing cycle is stored in an ultra capacitor that in turn provides energy to power the swing system.

The diesel engine’s motor/generator is also able to charge the capacitor, if required, or increase engine revolutions for quick hydraulic response when the boom arm and bucket controls are activated.

Kurt Moncini, Komatsu America senior product manager, said, “The new 36-ton- class HB365LC-3 excavator is built for power and production first, with the considerable fuel savings an added benefit.

“We applied everything we learned when we debuted the HB215LC-1, the world’s first fully-electric hybrid excavator in 2011. Now, we have the perfect balance of performance and fuel efficiency.”

To meet EPA Tier 4 Final requirements, the 8.85-liter engine combines a diesel particulate filter (DPF) and selective catalyst reduction (SCR) system with diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) to meet the NOx emission aftertreatment legislation.

As well as increased fuel efficiency, the unit delivers 200kW of power and includes an auto idle/auto shutdown system to limit idle time and save on fuel consumption.

Improvements have also been made in the cab, with an updated, seven-inch color screen able to relay machine data in a format for easy monitoring and incorporates a rearview camera display with gauges.

A high-back and heated suspension seat with updated adjustable armrests can be easily positioned, without the use of tools.

Operators are able to connect MP3 players and other digital devices to an auxilliary jack installed in the cab, while two 12V power ports provide a convenient way of recharging and powering the electronic gadgets.


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Tom is editor of and iVT magazine. During his 20 year career in journalism Tom has worked for a diverse range of titles including Men's Health and Cosmopolitan. He also edits iVT's UKi Media & Events stablemate Traffic Technology International.

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