Dutch company BAM Infra Nederland unveiled and actually put into service the world’s first electric road roller. How cool is that?
A road roller sounds like a perfect application for electrification, although BAM Infra quickly found out that there is no commercial product like that (the construction equipment category is just starting to take off).
They decided to convert an old diesel model and now it's enjoying a second life.
"BAM Infra Nederland has built and commissioned the world’s first fully electric 10 to 12-tonne road roller. This unique and sustainable piece of equipment was created by BAM’s plant and equipment department, on the basis of an older model which was due for an overhaul. The conversion took place over a period of one and a half year. This week the emission-free road roller was put to work on its first project, in the city of Almere. Other projects will follow soon."
It can drive for about eight-hours and then requires a 3-5 hour recharging (battery pack capacity was not disclosed).
The diesel version was consuming seven litres of fuel per hour (on average it was 73 litres per day), which sounds like a lot. Now it should be more reliable, quiet and probably also more economic, as well as zero emissions, of course.
Hopefully, soon more of those types of equipment will appear in construction areas, not only in the Netherlands.
Gallery: BAM Infra fully electric road roller
BAM takes the world’s first electric road roller into service
22 April 2020 16:06 - BAM Infra bv
Gouda, the Netherlands, 22 April 2020 - BAM Infra Nederland has built and commissioned the world’s first fully electric 10 to 12-tonne road roller. This unique and sustainable piece of equipment was created by BAM’s plant and equipment department, on the basis of an older model which was due for an overhaul. The conversion took place over a period of one and a half year. This week the emission-free road roller was put to work on its first project, in the city of Almere. Other projects will follow soon. With this electric road roller, BAM makes a significant contribution to the climate goals of its clients by providing cleaner construction methods.
Thanks to its electric propulsion, the roller emits no carbon dioxide or nitrogen whatsoever and thereby adds to BAM projects being eco-friendlier. In addition, the electric road roller is much quieter than conventional models. Compared to other heavy equipment, electrification of road rollers is relatively simple as they don’t have to perform repetitive heavy lifts tasks or prolonged excavation tasks. Much like a car, a roller needs energy mostly for driving and steering. Of course the engine of a road roller needs to propel more weight, but unlike a car a roller doesn’t need an extensive driving range.
Facts and figures
Compared to the roller’s original diesel engine, the electric conversion saves seven litres of fuel per hour (on a daily basis, that amounts to approximately 73 litres). With the electric road roller BAM reduces its carbon emissions by approximately 236 kilograms per day. On an annual basis, with 180 days of operation, the roller reduces BAM’s CO2 emissions by more than 42,000 kilograms. A fully charged battery will keep the roller running for eight hours, and recharging takes just three to five hours. As a result, BAM can count on the road roller to be ready for action every new morning.
Whereas electric alternatives are available for many types of lighter equipment, the options in the heavier categories are few and far between. And so, in an effort to realise its own sustainability ambitions and those of its clients, the people of BAM have put their specialist knowledge to use in the design and fabrication of the world’s first electric road roller.
Koob Bovenhuis, manager of the plant division BAM Infra Materieel: ‘This has been an incredible achievement and a fine example of the expertise and can-do mindset of our people. From the initial idea during a strategy session, it’s taken us just one and a half years to make the electric road roller a reality!’
Emission-free asphalt paving train
As the demand for sustainable solutions continues to grow, BAM considers this electric road roller to be just the first step towards developing a fully emission-free paving train. In addition to electric propulsion, the use of hydrogen could offer possible solutions for the propulsion of heavier equipment.