Introducing the World’s Largest All-Electric Vehicle, the e-Dumper

A Komatsu quarry mining truck in Switzerland is now the largest all-electric vehicle in the world.

According to Green Matters, the Komatsu truck coined the “e-Dumper” weighs in at almost 50 tons with wheels 6.5 feet in diameter, capable of holding up to 65 tons of stone. Its 700-kWh battery pack weighs 4.5 tons and carries 1,400 nickel manganese cobalt cells, which is comparable to an electric storage output of eight Tesla Model S batteries (image is of another Komatsu truck).

Using an old Komatsu HD 605-7 base, its diesel engine was swapped with the 700-kilowatt battery and put to work transporting material back and forth from a quarry to a cement works location, making up to 20 round trips a day.

Regarding the e-Dumper’s specifications, it will be capable of moving up and down slopes with an incline of up to 13 percent under the worst weather conditions. Regular climbs are expected to load its batteries with up to 3,000 amperes of electrical current. Also, it will use regenerative braking to recharge upon descent, at an estimated 40 kWh per trip. This power would then utilized by the e-Dumper as it treks back uphill.

The e-Dumper is the work of Ciments Vigier SA, a manufacturer of hydraulic cement in Biel, Switzerland. According to Phys.org, the project is being supported by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy, along with specialist firms lending expertise in electric trucks and safety assessments. Another key player is Marcel Held, a battery expert from the Swiss Federal Office of Energy assigned to measure the effect of damaged or overcharged cobalt cells.

“Some batteries start smoking; others burst into flames. The crucial thing in this instance is to make sure the neighboring cells are not damaged by the fire and heat. Otherwise, there is the risk of a chain reaction,” said Held.

No word yet on the e-Dumper’s cost, but it is estimated to be in the seven figures (Swiss francs).

Ars Technica


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