From June 2008 through March 2009, Komatsu sold about 30 diesel-electric hybrid excavators — the PC200-8 Hybrid — in Japan. At Intermat 2009, Komatsu announced that this first commercially available hybrid construction machine will go international with the launch of marketing in China this spring.
The Komatsu Hybrid System uses an electric motor/generator to turn the upper structure. Capacitors store energy generated during swing braking and discharge that energy during high-demand functions. The excavator's main power source — the diesel engine — continues to run in a very narrow, efficient power band. Komatsu says the hybrid uses an average of 25 percent less fuel than a standard PC200-8 excavator, and customer tests have shown up to 41 percent fuel savings.
Caterpillar will begin producing the worlds first hybrid bulldozer in October, 2009.