The world’s biggest truck—the more than 800-ton GVW BelAZ 75710 mining truck—is powered by an electric drive system comprising four electric traction motors from Siemens, each with an output of 1,200 kilowatts (approximately 1,800 hp). The electricity is provided by two generators, each of which is driven by a 16-cylinder diesel engine with an output of approximately 1,700 kW.
The first BelAZ 75710 model recently began operating at a Siberian mine in the Kuzbass region of Russia. The truck is more than 20 meters long, almost ten meters wide, and eight meters high. It weighs 360 tons when empty and can transport around 450 tonnes of cargo, a volume that corresponds to a fully loaded Airbus A380 airplane.
|The 800-ton GVW BelAZ 75710 mining truck. Click to enlarge.|
BelAZ (based in Belarus) wanted this to not only be the biggest truck in the world but also to carry 25% more payload than the world’s biggest dump truck at the time. Plans also called for a significant reduction of the cost per ton of transported material. The truck has a maximum speed of 64 km/h (40 mph) when empty.
Underground and open-pit mining companies face increasingly restrictive environmental protection regulations. These companies also want their transport vehicles to be available around the clock so that they can be as productive as possible. With this in mind, Siemens’ traction-drive experts in Nuremberg developed a reliable and powerful all-wheel drive system that uses four electric motors.
Unlike previous models, the new truck was to be outfitted with eight tires, because each tire is designed to carry a load of only about 100 tons. An extensively tried and tested drive system was used as the basis of the new truck’s drive system, and the engineers also developed a new type of control system. All of the components of the electric drive system came from Siemens.
The all-wheel drive configuration offered the engineers new possibilities, such as dynamic traction distribution on both of the truck’s axles. Moreover, if one of the electric motors were to fail, the truck would still have emergency drive capability. The four-wheel drive system and the four-wheel hydraulic steering system ensure that the tires, which are around four meters high, don’t get stuck in rough terrain.
The world’s second-largest truck, the Caterpillar 797F, has a payload capacity of 400 tons, a top speed of 42 mph (68 km/h), and is powered by a 3,800 hp (net) Cat C175-20 20-cylinder diesel engine matched with a seven-speed, planetary power shift transmission.