ENVIRONMENT: Driving down CO2 emissions
Innovations in the wheel loader product platform are delivering significant reductions in the company’s overall carbon dioxide (CO2) output, helping Volvo Construction Equipment meet its commitment to the WWF Climate Savers program.
Volvo CE’s partnership with the WWF’s Climate Savers program is designed to reduce emissions both from production and products, consequently helping cut CO2 emissions across the entire transport sector.
This commitment is more than just good intentions – Volvo CE is putting both its brain- and horsepower into initiatives to drastically reduce particle and NOx emissions, as well as CO2, while increasing fuel efficiency.
“These good results derive from new engine technology and the use of the OptiShift system, a lock-up converter combined with the Volvo CE RBB [reverse by braking], with advanced controls on top of that,” says Anders Torssell, Volvo CE’s Eskilstuna-based business planning manager for wheel loaders.
“The main difference in our latest generation of wheel loaders is the new engine,” he continues. “Obviously the engines have improved over time because of legislation, but the latest models have made big reductions in emissions possible with increased fuel efficiency.”
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According to Torssell, further improvements to the transmission and how the machine operates during different applications have also increased fuel efficiency, machine efficiency and productivity. “This means we can move a lot more material for a lot less effort,” he says.
“With a typical machine, such as an L120H, fuel efficiency has improved by 5-20% depending on the application and specification of the machine. With an average use of 2,000 hours per year and around 12 liters of diesel per hour, this reduces emissions significantly,” he explains.
OptiShift, for example, has been designed to increase operator comfort and machine durability, while optimizing fuel savings by up to 15% in applications such as load-and-carry.
Combined with the RBB system and the new torque converter with lock-up and free-wheel stator, the result is increased fuel efficiency and durability, higher productivity and better hill-climbing performance.
“The biggest benefit to our customers is in total cost of ownership, fuel efficiency, productivity and operability. But, most important is the environmental impact of reducing emissions and improving fuel efficiency,” says Anders.
“For Volvo, this means staying ahead of the competition by improving our machines’ efficiency and productivity, while having a positive impact on the environment, which ultimately benefits us, our customers and the planet,” he continues.
“These improvements allow Volvo CE dealers to put together a more comprehensive and complete package for their customers which offers them real benefits.”
Volvo CE’s wheel loader production facilities in Sweden, the US, Brazil, Germany and China are constantly being upgraded with the most efficient production methods to help reduce their environmental impact.
“We’re continually looking at new materials and components that require less energy to produce, are more environmental friendly and can reduce our environmental footprint,” Anders says. All of which ties in perfectly with the Volvo’s core values of quality, safety and environmental care.