Meet the e-Dumper. We too think a better name could've been chosen.
As the world’s transportation gradually makes a shift from internal combustion to hybrid to, eventually, fully electric, we’re going to see some interesting new takes on old pieces of machinery. Take the dump truck, for example. We’ll still require the use of them in the future, so someone might as well build an all-electric version right now. Actually, a couple of Swiss companies have already done so, according to inhabitat.com, and the result is what they call the e-Dumper. Really, that’s the name chosen by Lithium Storage GmbH and Kuhn Schweiz AG.
Hey, it sounds better than the name Apple would’ve chosen if they’d built the thing. Just saying. Anyway, the companies started off by disassembling a Komatsu HD 605-7 dump truck by taking out its original diesel engine and replacing it with an electric motor with 800 hp and 7,006 lb-ft of torque. Instead of the originally planned 600 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, they managed to fit a 700 kWh pack instead. That’s the equivalent storage capacity of eight Tesla Model S sedans. The battery pack alone weighs 4.5 tons. The $1 million prototype measures over 6.5 feet in diameter and the driver needs to climb nine stairs to reach the cabin.
For the next decade, the e-Dumper will be put to work on the slopes of the Chasseral in Switzerland, where there’s a quarry. It’ll transport materials from the mountain ridge down to a valley 20 times a day. It’ll be able to recuperate 40kWh of energy on each descent thanks to its regenerative braking system, equaling 800 kWh of energy per day. The e-Dumper will begin work this fall.