Liebherr said in late March it had rolled out the new R 9600 hydraulic excavator, a new version of its R 996 600-tonne machine, with several enhanced features.
The new release, which has a pair of QSK50 Cummins engines, will entering commercial production by year-end, with an electric version to follow – though Liebherr did not release a date.
It did note that by year-end there will be eight in operation in Australia.
The R 9600, based on the design of the R 9800, has among its features the Liebherr Power Efficiency (LPE) management system for improved fuel consumption and lower emissions without dropping productivity. The semi-autonomous Bucket Filling Assistant will be an optional item.
The unit comes in a U.S. EPA Tier IV-compliant version, which has selective catalytic reduction after-treatment. All R 9600 machines have been designed to exceed 80,000 operational hours.
“This 600-tonne excavator sets new standards in the open-pit mining market,” the OEM said, noting that the machine will have application across the globe.
The company said the R 9600 weight-optimized attachment makes use of “smart component” design, including an EVO backhoe bucket, hydraulic cylinders, shift levers, bucket links and attachment pins. In the standard backhoe configuration with a heavy-duty wear package, the R 9600 comes with a 37.5-cu.-meter (49.1-cu.-yd.) bucket for an ideal truck/shovel.
“It loads 190-tonne trucks in three passes, T 264 240-tonne trucks in four passes, T 274 300-tonne trucks in five passes and T 284 375-tonne trucks in six passes,” the company said.
The excavator is also available in a face shovel configuration, featuring a 37-cu.-meter (48.4-cu.-yd.) shovel, as standard with a heavy-duty wear package.
The R 9600 also is equipped with the Liebherr Assistance Systems, advanced on-board applications designed to support operators and allow greater efficiency with analytics and actionable insights using real-time data.
“The Truck Loading Assistant helps the operator attain optimal productivity and efficiency,” the OEM said. “With 99% measurement accuracy, the system measures the instantaneous bucket payload and provides real-time information to the operator.”
It also can strategize the number of passes needed to achieve a target payload, and offer progressive updates on that goal.
KPIs for performance can also be collected from the unit by operators, along with the severity of the application and the operational conformance of the machine – again, that information is available in real time.
The Bucket Filling Assistant is Liebherr’s first hydraulic excavator (HEX) automation product to be introduced for the mining industry. It will be available as an option for the backhoe version of machines.
“It allows for easier and faster bucket filling with a consistent bucket fill factor, load after load even in the toughest digging conditions. As a result the overall productivity improves while the operator’s fatigue level is reduced,” the company said.