KGP’s Briefing Series #5 – Non-Road Mobile Machinery NRMM Briefing Part 1

Monday, December 11, 2017

Following on from KGP’s 4th Briefing that looked at Commercial Vehicle Electrification we’ve taken a similar look at the Non-Road segment.  This introductory briefing will be followed by a number of subsequent briefings in 2018.

NRMM Electrification Background

Global production of diesel powered Non-Road Mobile Machinery (NRMM) stood at around 3 million units in 2016, with this figure expected to rise to around 3.25 million units in 2017.

Electrification and hybridisation within the automotive industry is one of the hottest topics on the lips of OEMs and suppliers currently. It is an effective way of conserving energy and reducing emissions that will undoubtedly play a large part in the future of the NRMM industry. The key question is how long will it take, and what will the technology look like?

Electrification in the automotive industry is not a new phenomenon, the passenger car market was producing electrically powered cars as early as 1900. However, the NRMM industry had to wait until 2003 for Hitachi to launch the first hybrid wheeled loader. The NRMM industry is unlike any other automotive industry, the variation in machinery type, engine, load cycle, power, torque, environment, speed and movement is unprecedented. In passenger car and commercial vehicles a hybrid or electric system can be rolled out almost comprehensively across each given industry with few alternations to the base system. In the NRMM industry that would be practically impossible.

Widespread full electrification of the powertrain in the NRMM industry is not feasible for the foreseeable future in any significant volume. However the industry dynamics are suitable for hybridisation. There are still large challenges to overcome, Legislative changes are constantly challenging the industry. Whether it is limiting emissions from the engine, stipulating work-place health and safety laws, noise levels and working hours in urban construction sites. The challenges are great and ever increasing.

There is increasing pressures from public, corporate and government agencies for a more environmentally friendly NRMM industry with the DieselGate Scandal fuelling this fire.

One size doesn’t fit all

The complexity and diverse nature of operations and applications within the NRMM industry means a one-solution fits all approach, that might work in other automotive industries is not applicable here. To balance TCO, ROI, fuel consumption, toque and power densities and other driving attributes of electrification is a tricky and expensive undertaking.

This Briefing Paper outlines the current state of electrification within the NRMM Industry and presents some of the opportunities and challenges moving forwards. Analysis of the three key sectors – Agricultural Machinery, Construction Equipment and Materials Handling – will give an insight into an exciting future for electrification within the NRMM industry.

A PDF version can be downloaded here: Briefing Paper No 5 NRMM Electrification 11 12 17

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