Volvo CE and its customer Skanska are turning the quarrying industry upside down in a groundbreaking study to create the world’s first ‘emission-free’ quarry. Drawing on the electromobility and automation expertise of the Volvo Group, the research project, dubbed Electric Site, aims to electrify each transport stage in a quarry – from excavation to primary crushing, and transport to secondary crushing – although a negligible amount of diesel power will still be used. The system’s efficiency, safety and environmental benefits are set to impact both customers and society at large.
The viability of the Electric Site research project has been tested over 10 weeks at Skanska’s Vikan Kross quarry, near Gothenburg, Sweden. The results are even better than expected. The tests showed a 98% reduction in carbon emissions, a 70% reduction in energy cost and a 40% reduction in operator cost. The results also indicate that the Electric Site project takes a big step towards helping Volvo CE achieve its future vision where work sites are ten times more efficient, with zero accidents, zero unplanned stops and zero emissions.
Together, these results support the potential for a 25% reduction in total cost of operations. However, at this stage, the reduction in total cost of operations is just a prediction. As the prototype machines are part of a research project and are not commercially available, it is impossible to give a guaranteed figure.
The Electric Site is part of Concept Labs. Volvo CE teamed up with Skanska Sweden, the Swedish Energy Agency and two Swedish universities – Linköping University and Mälardalen University – in October 2015 to collaborate on the SEK 203 million project.
Volvo CE is coordinating the project and is in charge of developing the machines and systems. Skanska Sweden is providing logistical solutions, application relevance and job site knowledge. The Swedish Energy Agency is helping to fund the project and the universities are carrying out research. Two PhD students are looking at battery aging and energy management for electric vehicles, as well as functional safety.
Vikan Kross is Skanska’s second largest quarry. It is located in Gothenberg, Sweden. It has been in operation since the early 1960s and plays a major role in the development of the area. The Vikan Kross quarry produces stone materials in various dimensions for building and road construction projects. It also sells materials to asphalt and concrete plants.The quarry supplies materials to six concrete plants within the Gothenburg area. For the most part, this includes stone materials such as cubed stone for concrete production. Over the past 20 years, an average of 1.25 million tonnes has been mined there each year. In a typical day, 6,000 tonnes of material is produced.
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The Electric Site, aims to electrify each transport stage in a quarry
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