Volvo CE’s hybrid excavator delivers CO2 emission savings of “around 15%”
By Andy Brown13 June 2023
A hybrid crawler from Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) with an operating weight of 38-43 tonnes is being used on a construction site in Germany where it is reportedly leading to significant savings in CO2 emissions.
The OEM says that unique hydraulic hybrid technology, the EC380E Hybrid excavator can capture and store the energy generated in the boom down motion to drive the assist motor and power the engine.
It is being used by Eichstetter GmbH at its gravel works in Fürth, Germany to extract ‘mountain gravel for use in the production of high-quality building material and aggregates. Eichstetter has reported that it is seeing fuel savings up to 15% in comparison to its conventional machine equivalent.
“The Volvo EC380E Hybrid is more economical”, says Ludwig Eichstetter, co-managing director of Eichstetter GmbH. “It has about the same fuel consumption as our Volvo EC300E. But where the EC300E manages about 2,500 cubic meters a day, the Volvo EC380E Hybrid manages over 3,000.”
The EC380E Hybrid harvests free energy from the boom down motion. This regular and powerful lowering movement pressurizes a hydraulic accumulator, which in turn uses this energy to drive the auxiliary hydraulic motor to support the engine system when needed. All this whilst delivering the same level of control and performance as a conventional EC380E, including the ability to operate in ECO and hybrid modes in parallel.
Depending on the type of application, Volvo CE’s hybrid technology promises fuel savings of up to 17% as well as CO2 emission savings of around 15%. Eichstetter already had a conventional EC380E in its fleet, so comparing the two machines over a period of weeks was straightforward. The EC380E Hybrid delivered a fuel saving of around 10-15% depending on the use and operator handling the machine.