The pilot project, described as the world’s first retrofit on large construction equipment, was carried out to meet client requirements on the HS2 rail project.
The six-month pilot retrofit was carried out by exhaust systems specialist Eminox on a Stage IIIA Junttan PM20 piling rig. It was tested by Imperial College London’s Centre for Low Emission Construction and Emissions Analytics. Its performance was then validated by the Energy Savings Trust.
HS2 has set strict emissions requirements for non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) on the project, with all plant needing to meet at least EU Stage IV requirements from 2022 (despite the UK not being in the EU).
The Eminox retrofit removes particulates, hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide emissions using airless dosing technology.
Retrofitting the Junttan PM20 with engine cleaning technology has served to demonstrate that contractors and their rental companies do not have to buy new equipment to meet HS2's requirements – retrofitting is good enough and much cheaper. HS2 Ltd has calculated that, across the whole project, £300m could be saved by retrofitting old machinery instead of buying new.
Eminox director of retrofit & aftermarket, Carlos Vicente, said: “At Eminox we’re focused on helping to reduce emissions across a wide range of sectors and working on this pioneering HS2 project has enabled us to extend our leading retrofit technology from on road applications to construction equipment. Being first to market with Energy Savings Trust accreditation for non-road mobile machinery demonstrates the project’s innovation – it enables the construction industry to have new opportunities for cost-effectively reducing emissions to the lowest possible level and improving air quality across the industry.”
Daniel Marsh form the Centre for Low Emission Construction at Imperial College London, said: “The NRMM retrofit project has allowed us to work in partnership with key organisations to produce scientific evidence to give the construction industry the confidence to adopt new cost-effective measures to reduce machine emissions. The use of new technology will allow contractors to upgrade their most polluting machines to meet the latest emission standards and help reduce the air pollution impacts across the whole HS2 project.”
Balfour Beatty head of sustainability Bekir Andrews said: “Reducing emissions from plant on construction sites is a key challenge that our sector faces – it is something that we are particularly passionate about at Balfour Beatty, having recently launched our sustainability strategy, Building New Futures. Whilst engine standards are improving and new electric, hybrid and hydrogen solutions are starting to enter the market, there is a lot of plant and machinery that still runs on IIIA and IIIB engines. We are immensely pleased to have worked alongside HS2, Eminox and the Centre for Low Emission Construction to develop a practical solution to improve emissions from construction sites and offer a solution for our sector.”
A second pilot is now under way on a larger Bauer BG30 403kW rig, to test whether larger machines within the 350kW to 550kW range can also be retrofitted, providing even more benefits to the sector.