Construction Equipment Europe
Building EV charging stations with electric equipment
Volvo Electric Construction Equipment
Electric utility works

Electric for sustainable utility works

When it comes to building cities that are fit for our low carbon future, the only tools for the job are zero-emission solutions which reduce noise and pollution, while maintaining the highest levels of productivity. Our electric construction equipment, with zero exhaust emissions and near silence, is designed to thrive in urban environments. At a time of increasing low carbon sustainability targets, our electric machines open up a whole world of opportunities for more sustainable utility works.

Utility projects and public services are the lifeblood of our cities, but with the need to reduce air and noise pollution in our urban centers, it is more urgent than ever before to look for more environmentally friendly solutions in their development. Whether it is establishing telecommunications, building sewage and water infrastructure or maintaining electricity and power, it is vital to adopt efficient and reliable methods without harmful side effects. And thanks to the advantages of our electric construction equipment, the transformation towards more sustainable cities, which maintain the health and wellbeing of its residents, is already underway. Benefiting from advanced battery technology, our electric machines provide lasting runtime with the opportunity for simple, easy charging. This makes it easy to keep projects running smoothly without impacting the day-to-day workings of urban environments. With our zero-emission excavators and wheel loaders, we’re not just laying the foundations for public services, but laying the foundations for a greener future.

Show more

Building electric vehicle (EV) charging stations with electric machines

The smartest way to build electric charging stations is with zero-emission electric machines. This ensures you have sustainability in mind across the whole value chain, from the very start of the project. Volvo CE’s near silent electric compact excavators are a perfect fit in urban environments. Read how we are supporting our partners in their sustainability goals with our electric construction equipment.

EV charging with Ellevio

The availability of public charging stations is an essential component in our sustainability transformation. So Volvo CE is supporting energy company Ellevio to install EV charging stations in Stockholm with our quiet, zero emission machines. It makes sense to use electric to build electric. By doing so we are helping to reduce the carbon impact of infrastructure projects like this, as well as assisting in the acceleration of the wider electric transition.

CO₂ savings calculator

Saving carbon and costs

We built 64 charging stations at a major Swedish facility using zero-emission electric excavators and wheel loaders. Proving that shifting to more sustainable practices need not be too expensive, project costs were only 0.9% higher due to savings in energy costs. What is more, Vattenfall saved more than 3,000 kg of CO₂ emissions compared to a diesel-powered project, highlighting the significant environmental and cost-saving benefits.

Building electric with electric

Partnering with Vattenfall

Stefan Larsson, Construction Manager of Tuna Förvaltning & Entreprenad, believes that not only is working with electric machines great for the environment, but they are great for business too. He said: “This is our first experience of using electric machines – and it has been surprisingly positive. There was no compromise in how we went about our work, and the fuel savings and low noise were valuable added bonuses.”

Partnering with Vattenfall

Zero emission collaboration

Our climate challenge requires collaboration. By partnering across the supply chain we can ensure we are driving sustainability across every aspect of the journey. We partner with customers as well as across Volvo Group - ensuring Volvo’s electric construction equipment can work in harmony with other solutions like Volvo electric trucks. This was perfectly demonstrated when building EV charging stations in Lyon, France.

Building EV charging stations

How to charge an electric excavator during utility works?

Within utility projects, it can be quite easy to solve the question of how to charge an electric excavator. Despite often being tight surroundings, city centres often provide ready access to the electricity grid. So when Ellevio built a charging station in the middle of Stockholm City, they were able to use electricity directly from the grid via a connection box where they had access to several different outputs (16A, 32A, 63A, etc). They then used a DC fast charger for outdoor use to power up the Volvo ECR25 Electric during opportunity breaks in their work. An extension cord was also used to provide more flexible charging, no matter where the machine was positioned on site.

Runtime calculator

Taking charge of zero emission future

German firm Kuhlmann Leitungsbau is using one zero emission L25 Electric compact wheel loader and two EC18 Electric compact excavators to complete its inner-city utility works. The electric machines are busy laying a pipeline for this energy company in the heart of a bustling city centre. Not only have the EC18 Electric machines been able to complete many of the tasks required on a single charge, but when it does come to needing a recharge, they take their power from local photovoltaic systems. For the larger L25 Electric, the company wanted to avoid driving it to a charging station, so installed a mobile wallbox that was connected to the local electricity grid. A flexible and practical solution that makes it easy to access power as and when they need it - by simply plugging it in before a break.

How is it to work with an electric excavator?

Gridserve is one of a number of customers pioneering a net-zero construction project and digging a trench for EV charging stations using our electric compact excavator. But how are they finding it to operate? The benefits of no fumes and less noise make it less tiring to operate and much easier to communicate with the team. What is more, the 20kWh battery helps shift soil for four hours straight, before needing a quick one hour recharge. On a typical working day, they never go close to depleting the battery, ensuring optimum productivity with minimum maintenance.

Partnering with Gridserve
Charging electric construction equipment
Charging electric construction
Charging solutions

How well does an electric excavator perform?

Digging a trench is a typical task for electric excavators. We put Volvo CE’s EC18 Electric compact excavator to the test and this is how it performed.

  • Test: Dig a trench measuring 20m straight, 600 mm wide, 750 mm deep
  • Operator: Experienced
  • State of Charge (SOC): 77% at the start and 46% at the end
  • Total operating time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Energy consumed: 5.6 kWh
  • Workmode first 10m: ECO 1100 rpm
  • Workmode last 10m: ECO 1600 rpm
  • Ground conditions: Hard and compact clay with 25% stones/boulders
  • Weather: Sunshine, 15° Celsius / 59° Fahrenheit

Result? Excellent performance in challenging conditions

Conclusion:

  • Despite the hard digging and challenging ground conditions, the EC18 Electric compact excavator performed very well - completing the task in good time, with enough charge and reduced energy consumption
  • After 1 hour and 40 minutes working in challenging ground conditions, involving hard digging, the EC18 Electric performed efficiently with a 30% consumption of the battery by the end of the task.

Comparing emissions across diesel and electric projects

Construction company Nordkysten A/S, in collaboration with the National Research Center for Working Environment, in Denmark, embarked on an interesting experiment. Across two very similar residential roads with two similar task profiles, one road was worked on using only electric tools and machinery, while the other was handled exclusively by fossil fuel-powered equipment. During both projects, the teams carried out particle measurements – and the result was clear to see (and breathe). On the fossil fuel-powered project, there were lots of particle emissions, while the “zero-emission road” was only disturbed by occasional smoking breaks, and a passing diesel-powered post van.

Working with electric construction machines

According to customer Stig Bo Lippold at Nordkysten A/S

More working hours with electric construction equipment

More working hours

"We are in dialogue with the Municipality of Copenhagen, which has a strict rule that excavation work must not take place until after 07.00 - but with such a quiet excavator, we argue that we can easily start a few hours earlier. What is more, we are much less likely to disturb the traffic and pedestrians later in the day.”

Comparison between electric and diesel construction machine

Sharing in the transition

"(When we speak to customers) we make two offers on a number of selected tasks. One with the use of conventional machinery, and one with as sustainable machinery as possible. The client can see the difference straightaway, can decide the best way forward and is therefore better involved in the transition.”

Operators choose electric construction machines

A popular choice

"We chose Volvo because the new compact electric excavator is perfect for our use. With an overnight charger and a power unit out on site, it can solve many of the tasks we work with. And our workers are happy to be rid of diesel and engine noise. Now they can talk to each other without the machine having to stop."

Benefits of electric construction machines

Why choose electric construction equipment?

Our electric construction machines offer sustainable, zero-emission operations that align with global environmental goals - as well as customers’ own sustainability targets. They provide cost savings through reduced fuel and maintenance expenses, and improve working conditions with significantly lower noise levels and a more pleasant working environment. Electric construction equipment not only contributes to a cleaner environment but also enhances operational efficiency and opens up new business opportunities in various sectors - such as indoor or night-time work. Their versatility makes electric machines a valuable choice for modern construction needs.

Electric benefits

70 - 95 % decrease in carbon emissions

At Volvo CE, we conduct thorough life cycle assessments across all our products to track overall carbon dioxide emissions. These analyses reveal that the usage phase, i.e., when the machine is in operation, diesel machines provide 70 to 95 percent of the total carbon footprint. An electric machine, on the other hand, produces no emissions at all during the usage phase, dramatically reducing emissions. This means customers can operate safe in the knowledge that when they work, they are doing so in a far more sustainable manner.

Life cycle assessments
Zero emission construction
Zero emission construction
Why go electric?

Electric construction equipment for every job

Waste and recycling

Electric waste and recycling

The very nature of waste and recycling applications are centred around sustainability and working with our environment and not against it. It therefore makes sense to opt for zero-emission electric machines to carry out the multitude of tasks in this segment. Discover how our solutions contribute to companies’ circular approach to waste management and recycling.

Waste and recycling
Partnership

Electric partnership

We are committed to working with customers to help them decarbonise their operations. It is why we have embarked on a number of pioneering partnerships such as our recent collaboration with CRH, a global leader in building materials solutions. Together we can explore holistic net zero innovations to drive down carbon across construction.

Decarbonisation with CRH
Landscaping

Electric landscaping

The often sensitive environments in landscaping projects mean a lighter touch is required in their construction and maintenance. Zero emission machines with no polluting fumes or loud engine noise are the perfect solution to accelerate sustainable change across the landscaping sector, ensuring a more peaceful operation to protect surrounding flora and fauna.

Electric landscaping