Electric and hybrid vehicles for construction, agriculture and mining will be a $30 billion market in 2025. Companies such as Komatsu, John Deere
and Caterpillar manufacture the big vehicles, mainly hybrid whilst other manufacturers offer smaller, pure-electric versions. IDTechEx's report Electric Vehicles for Construction, Agriculture and Mining 2015-2025 (www.IDTechEx.com/mining
) explains all with detailed forecasts, comparisons and assessments.
Pure electric is a legal requirement indoors but outdoors, fuel savings and better performance is attractive. Cranes and man lifters, indoors and outdoors, have many applications resulting in production volumes larger than most people realise - reaching unit sales of 189,000 by 2025 according to market research analysts IDTechEx.
This industry is about to change radically. For example, in mining, over 90% of the world's mines are open cast. They are often in remote places up to 4000 meters above sea level, where shipping diesel can cost more than buying it. Consequently, there is now a move to have 350 kW giant haul trucks working the floor and separately the top of the mine with electric rail-veyors lifting the ore from bottom to top. With an all-electric solution new pollution laws can be met whilst saving money from the electricity coming from the mine's own wind turbines and photovoltaics - improving company image. Battery
swapping and fast charging of those batteries
means 350 kWh batteries suffice - big but no larger than those in other EV sectors.
The electrification of vehicles has a higher value proposition in the mining vehicle industry where the costs of operation have increased in relation to the volatility of diesel prices; in addition through electrification of vehicles the high costs of ventilation of diesel emissions inside mines can be substantially reduced. However the mining industry is currently in a bust period after a boom period that ended in 2012 and now structural changes are already planned in the coal industry. The cyclical nature of the mining industry means that large volumes of new equipment will not be acquired by mining industries before 2018, therefore delaying the adoption of electric mining vehicles.
The mining industry for iron ore and rare earth metals is booming in China where some local manufacturers are leap frogging directly to electric machines. Some leading global suppliers understand this trend and have decided to develop and supply these machines to their Chinese clients.
The value proposition of electrification in the construction and agriculture vehicle industry is attractive as well, since 20 to 30% fuel efficiencies can be achieved. As opposed to the construction vehicle market which is currently stable, the agricultural vehicle market is set to grow at an estimated 2% growth based on the global population trend growth and the trend of population concentrating in urban environments - a trend that will reduce the rural labour and drive the demand for agricultural mechanisation.
Given the Tier 4 final environmental restrictions imposed in the USA, and homologous regulations in Europe and Japan, leading manufacturers have developed solutions to achieve these targets in emissions through increasingly complex adjustments to ICE equipment. The emergence of electric vehicles for the construction and the agriculture industry with its simplicity, fuel efficiency and reduced maintenance costs will eventually be adopted by end users, who will realise the benefits of electrification as opposed to complex adjustments in ICE machines.
Finally the recent confirmation by the WHO
in relation to the carcinogenic effects of diesel emissions will provide the final push for electrification of all industrial diesel based machines.
) is a leading technology market research company that covers the full electric vehicle industry not just cars.
The new report Electric Vehicles for Construction, Agriculture and Mining 2015-2025
shows how mines will electrify much more but only after the current bust period of the boom-and-bust that characterises this industry. It shows why the ubiquitous tractor in agriculture will, at last, be electric in volume quantities by 2025 and how new forms of vehicle design are coming. Benchmarking from the 37 categories of electric vehicle that IDTechEx forecasts, the report explains what new technologies will arrive and why. Supercapacitors
, new power components, greater modularisation and integration will transform this industry. The report draws on interviews and results of many recent conferences in these sectors. It will allow you to understand the drivers, technologies and players involved in the transition to electrical machines in this industry.
Top image: John Deere