Manufacturing Today

Demolition & Breaking Equipment – A Study

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JCB Excavator
JCB Excavator

In India, the concept of demolition has gained popularity in the last 10 to 15 years generally in metro cities where availability of land is less, especially in congested and populated areas where old building or structures are demolished or destructed to develop new buildings to get extra height or spread the present construction and get more area or facilities. Demolition also happens in railways, chemical factories, laboratories, nuclear power stations and defense where hazardous materials such as lead, radio-logical, chemical and biological contamination might occur and hence health and safety, security, noise, dust, traffic and vibration must be very carefully managed. At International levels, technologies to demolish or destruct are very advanced as compared to India since construction of tall buildings and structures in India started on a very large scale in the last 15 years.

Tech Talk

New age technological advancements in demolition and breaking equipment have ensured that there are new designs, hybrid machines and fusion-engineered products now available in the market. “The recent technologies that we have introduced in our range of demolition and breaking equipment are high reach demolition excavators, building implosions and high reach crushers. In excavator demolition method, excavators with shear attachments are typically used to dismantle steel structural elements. Hydraulic hammers are often used for concrete structures and concrete processing attachments are used to crush concrete to a manageable size, and to remove reinforcing steel. In building implosion method, the technique involves strategically placing explosive charges to remove a building’s support structure so that it collapses on itself, causing as little damage to its surroundings as possible and an expert can ensure that the structure falls into its own footprint, so as not to damage neighbouring structures’ says Shivam Sadana, Managing Director, Sadana Properties & Chairman, Sadana Security and Infrastructure. All Sany excavators are connected to their call center into their central monitoring center, called ECC or the Enterprise Control Center which is connected to that through a GPS. This ensures that all their customers get the information about their machines every day in the morning in real time as well. Sany also has a centralized monitoring system, so if there is anything abnormal can be tracked. There is full connectivity of their equipment to ECC.

New Vistas

Volvo CE is at the forefront of technological development and, each year their parent company, the Volvo Group, invests billions of dollars in research and development to drive new innovations. Known for their industry-leading fuel efficiency and productivity, Volvo CE excavators are among the best in the business. The EC480D, EC750D and the EC950E are the most popular models for mining, while smaller sites can make use of more versatile options such as the EC350D. Nonetheless, the mining industry generally favors higher capacity excavators, and in the class of 50 t and higher we are the leading supplier in India and offer excavators up to 100 t-rated machines. “The newer models in our D-series excavators are equipped with G4 work modes that optimise fuel efficiency and performance. These work modes — Idle (I), Fine (F), General (G), Heavy (H) and Power max (P) — are integrated within the throttle control, so that operators can easily select the best one for the task at hand. In addition, an ECO mode automatically switches off the engine, further reducing fuel consumption. Two of our biggest excavators, the EC950E and the EC750D, also come with an electro-hydraulic system which enhances fuel efficiency while increasing productivity and performance. The electro-hydraulic system uses intelligent technology to control on-demand flow and reduce internal losses in the hydraulic circuit. This provides superior digging force, shortens cycle times, and increases controllability,” says Dimitrov Krishnan, Vice President and Head of Volvo CE India.

Efficiency Matters

Demolition has become an integral part of the Indian construction industry since several independent homes and old buildings are making way for high rises and skyscrapers. This is also why several organisations are in the fray for what is being considered an increasingly complex business that needs a combination of project management and engineering skills to be effective and efficient. Deepak Garg, Director & CEO – ‎Sany South Asia & Sany Heavy Industry India explains, “our equipment efficiency, the R&D that we do, the efficiency of our whole you can say power train is much more efficient and the customers derive benefit in terms of lower fuel consumption and better productivity. So even SY500, the ruggedness of the machine the excavator for mining is much more rugged excavator, the fuel economy per ton, when you calculate for mining it’s per ton fuel consumption, or like our mileage for cars. So that is much more fuel efficient now in these new machines. So this is mainly because we use electronic controls and we use very efficient hydraulic systems. So these are third generation hydraulics from Japan that we use on our equipment. So all these equipment that we are launching are much more fuel efficient, very highly productive and cost per ton or cost per cubic meter to the end client is much better 5% to 10% better compared to the current products that are there in the market.” Again, for operators, the operator comfort is more important. “So all our equipment has got a lot of comfort and their controls are very flexible, very simple. So that is there, and all cabins and all are air conditioned. So operators do not have any fatigue in the operator’s cabin. All the cabins have a rollover protection, a fall over protection. So in case of any rock falling, or any toppling the operator will be safe. So cabins are designed like that,” adds Garg.

Eco Balance

Demolition is one of the most demanding applications, in terms of working environment. However, it requires equipment to work in hazardous and dusty locations with uneven ground conditions and machines often work towards the upper limits of their abilities. One of the safest and eco-friendly methods for controlled demolition, dismantling and selective demolition is said to be diamond sawing. Diamond Wire Saws technology uses wires of various diameters and lengths that has been impregnated with diamond dust of different sizes. Being known as the hardest material on earth, diamonds ensure that this is a cutting edge technology that helps cut large and heavy reinforced concrete, masonry, steel and rock efficiently. Likewise it is an ideal choice when time and work space is limited and vibration and impact shock cannot happen.  “We are very focused on innovation that adds value for our customers. For each technological advancement we include in a design, assess factors such as the cost, maintenance and performance of that machine. For example, we might develop a new design that improves performance on the job site for the labors and to meet the site requirement. But if it adds too much cost to make the machine profitable for owners; or if it requires too much additional maintenance then we do not include it,” says Sadana. “Looking ahead, we will continue to focus our innovation around the three guiding principles of the Volvo Group: quality, safety and environmental care. We are committed to building the highest quality machines, so Volvo CE models use the latest technology to deliver better productivity and longer uptime. Similarly, our attention to greater safety has helped us create some of the most advanced operator cabs in this, or any, industry. And being committed to environmental care has led Volvo CE to produce machines that achieve its famous fuel-saving capabilities,” explains Krishnan.

Market Drivers

With rapid urbanization, there are a lot of redevelopment projects being carried out in terms of the total spend on demolition & breaking equipment. However actual spending on the demolition and breaking equipment/process depends upon the area, location of the project and the type of technology in use. Again, the recent momentum gained by infrastructure projects in India and spike in sales has started to reflect this positivity. “Our company regularly keeps a tab on the latest infrastructure market trends in India. There is now more demand for the infrastructure development and demolition too. We are planning to introduce new innovative development and demolition equipment. The infrastructure market is huge and sales always depends upon the project,” avers Sadana. Krishnan adds, “India’s push to expand connectivity among its population and business centers presents a huge opportunity for Volvo CE. Infrastructure development continues to be the key growth driver in our economy and while the country is making strong progress there is still much to be done. We remain the only major manufacturer present in all equipment sectors: mining, road building or general construction. Whatever the demands of the job, Volvo’s equipment offer the company’s hallmark qualities industry-leading fuel efficiency and productivity levels that can deliver the fuel savings they want but without the need to take on newer hybrid systems, instead utilising proven designs.”

Training Right

Sany India is an overseas operator training center as well as technical training center for Sany Equipment and does continuous operator trainings for their customers. “We also develop operators from scratch and fresh operators are also developed continuously. This is an ongoing activity, so we would do close to 1,000 operators training per year. Similarly we focus on technical trainings because this is a base to keep the equipment in healthy condition. So we have a continuous program going on to train operators to certain standards. Of late, Sany has also partnered with infrastructure equipment, Skill Council, which is under the Skill Development Council of India and Sany’s training center has been approved as one of the key training centers for the infra skill development. In fact we have just started that program with the Infrastructure Equipment Skill Council and have signed the MOU, between Infrastructure Equipment Skill Council and Crane Owners Association of India to develop operator training programs through Sany,” avers Garg.

Trend Check

India is a growing economy and has a lot of scope of infrastructure development and demolition. Soon the nation will have easier and cost saving demolition machines. Over the next five years, this sector would have more efficient, safe, cost and time saving machines and methods of demolition. With government sponsored efforts like Smart City, highway projects, ports development, metro projects and the new momentum in mining are some important spaces where the industry can make an impact. Likewise, highway and road widening projects and large format real estate projects like mixed developments which are fast becoming popular augur well to ensure that demolition and breaking equipment will indeed be path breakers in more ways than one.

This story appeared in the Jan 2018 issue of Construction Week here: January 2018_Demolition & Breaking Equipment

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