New Komatsu 50 tonne excavator offers higher production, lower fuel burn

Australian Earthmoving News:

Komatsu has released a new 50 tonne class excavator, the PC490LC-11, featuring a Tier 4 Final-compliant low emission engine, and delivering increased production and lower fuel consumption.

Designed for heavy construction, quarrying and demolition applications, the PC490LC-11 has an operating weight of 48.7 tonnes and is powered by a Komatsu SAA6D125E-7 engine rated at 270 kW.

According to Amber Rickard, Komatsu’s National Business Manager – Construction, the PC490LC-11 replaces the 46.1 tonne PC450LC-8, which it significantly outperforms in key operating criteria.

“These include a larger maximum bucket size of 2.7 cu m, a 15% increase in lift capacity, and up to 13% greater production and 15% better fuel efficiency with its enhanced power mode,” she said.

The new PC490LC-11 incorporates a number of major improvements and new features compared with its predecessor.

These include:

  • Enhancements to the hydraulic system, including efficiency improvements to reduce hydraulic loss, larger displacement pumps, increased hydraulic flow in power mode and a hydraulically driven variable speed reversible cooling fan.
  • Increased durability, with reinforced swing circle, reinforced revolving frame and a larger reinforced undercarriage with robust components for improved reliability.
  • Improved operator comfort, through a large capacity high-back electric air suspension seat, fully adjustable updated armrests, proportional control joysticks, and high-capacity air conditioning.
  • Upgraded ICT (Information Communications Technology) through an improved high-resolution monitor panel in the cab, providing detailed operational and machine status information to the operator, service personnel and fleet managers.
  • Enhanced serviceability, through centralised service points, rear-opening engine cover, factory standard handrails and single-pole battery isolation,
  • The latest KOMTRAX system which remotely monitors critical machine operating criteria  – including key Tier 4 engine components and operating parameters – for early prediction of potential issues, and rapid troubleshooting and diagnosis.

“Our new PC490LC-11 represents a complete redesign over the PC450LC-8,” said Rickard.

“Not only does it have a new Komatsu Tier 4 Final compliant low emission engine – which dramatically cuts emissions compared with Tier 3 and earlier engines – but our design engineers have greatly enhanced the hydraulic system for increased power and efficiency, and significantly beefed up the undercarriage, swing system and counterweight.

“We’ve improved hydraulic efficiency through higher-displacement pumps, providing increased flow output at lower engine RPM, which allows the engine to operate at its most efficient speed, and we’ve increased hydraulic pipe size diameters to reduce hydraulic pressure loss.

“The PC490LC-11 is also the only excavator in this size class with a closed-centre load-sensing system, for better fuel efficiency, improved fine control and simultaneous multiple functions,” she said.

“And in addition to standard hammer and quick hitch piping, the PC490LC-11 now comes with an additional service valve for easy setup of a proportionally controlled secondary auxiliary line.”

Much of the increased operating weight of the PC490LC-11 compared with the PC450LC-8 is due to a heavier counterweight and extra heavy duty undercarriage.

“The heavier counterweight and more robust undercarriage increase lift capacity by up to 15%, allowing the use of larger buckets and attachments, and for the machine to lift heavier loads around sites,” Amber said.

“In addition, this heavier duty undercarriage provides added durability and improved operator comfort in tough working conditions such as quarries, demolition and heavy construction, and rock-breaking work.

“The end result is an excavator that delivers lower costs per tonne, through its higher productivity and improved fuel efficiency, matched with durability and maintenance features that significantly reduce machine downtime and service costs,” she said.

“These machine features, combined with Komatsu’s industry-leading levels of service and support, including our Fix It First Time concept, KOMTRAX, our InSite Fleet Management Centre and Komplimentary Maintenance offering, all contribute to bringing down operating costs for Komatsu machine owners,” said Rickard.

Brief specs of the PC490LC-11 are: Operating weight, 48,690 kg; engine, Tier 4 Final-certified Komatsu SAA6D125E-7 engine rated at 270 kW; bucket size range, 1.45-2.7 cu m; maximum dig depth, 7755 m (3380 mm arm option); bucket breakout, 24,400 kgf; arm breakout, 20,900 kgf.

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