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Fri April 03 2020

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Tipping point nears for semi-automatic diggers

13 Mar Semi-automatic diggers and dozers are set to become far more prevalent after a raft of manufacturers signed deals with Leica Geosystems, one of the leading manufacturers of machine control technology.

Leica Geosystems has this week announced working agreements with Liebherr, JCB, John Deere, Hidromek and Zoomlion.

Leica’s excavator control technology will also be on Case 210 and 250, Doosan 255, Hitachi 210 and 300, and John Deere 210 and 300.

The various OEMs will use Leica iCON technology and global positioning systems to provide their customers will the latest machine control technology.

The Liebherr Dozer PR736 Generation 8 will now be supported with a new cable kit for the Leica iCON iGD4SP, iGD2 and iGD3 machine control solutions for bulldozer grading. This enables the dozer to interface within a 3D environment, eliminating the need for stringlines, stakes or hubs.

Liebherr will also adopt Leica iXE2D and iXE3D machine control solutions for its wheeled and crawler excavators

“As construction in general is moving faster and faster when it comes to data and position-driven solutions for productivity and quality, machine control solutions for the construction industry are becoming more and more important,” said Leica Geosystems machine control president Magnus Thibblin. “Liebherr relies on our extensive knowledge of these solutions to offer customers value-added service and support straight from the factory, and we’re glad to enter into this strong working relationship.”

“To be able to realise projects in the construction industry successfully, earthmoving operations must be carried out precisely, quickly and effectively,” said Joachim Strobel managing director sales at Liebherr-EMtec. “Working with Leica Geosystems state-of-the-art machine control solutions, we can offer our customers this ability. These machine control solutions form the basis for future automation and an outlook on what possibilities may be available in the future.”

At JCB, generation X excavators 131X, 140X, 150X and 220X will also now be supported with a new cable kit for the Leica iCON iXE1D, iXE2D and iXE3D machine control solutions for excavator guidance.

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The iXE3 3D excavator machine control system automatically controls boom, bucket, tilt and tilt rotator bucket functions to dig faster and more accurately to the target design surface and cross slope.

“Automating the excavator on a jobsite will increase productivity and accuracy, decrease operator fatigue and fuel consumption. I am convinced that a more focused and alert operator is a safer operator, decreasing the risk of accidents and costly rework errors,” said Kris Maas, product management director in the machine control division at Leica Geosystems.

John Deere is also adopting Leica technology for its crawler dozers – specifically the 700-750-850 L Series
will use Leica iCON iGD4SP, iGD2 and iGD3 machine control solutions.

Hidromek HMK600MG motor graders will now be supported with a new cable kit for the Leica iCON iGG2, iGG3 and iGG4 machine control solutions for motor grader guidance.

Leica’s relationship with Zoomlion will begin with supporting the Badger 215G excavator with machine control tech for excavator guidance.

“We are honoured to bring Zoomlion customers more options in their machine control strategy with this newest integration,” said Leica Geosystems Machine Control President Magnus Thibblin. “Working with OEMs from all around the world, like Zoomlion, we are dedicated to advancing the profession and the professional of heavy construction.”

“Zoomlion is excited to be partnering with a company that is at the forefront of this emerging technology,” said Paul Haines, senior manager with Zoomlion North America R&D. “The combination of Leica’s control and guidance systems, along with Zoomlion’s rugged dependability, shows our commitment to being a class leader in this market segment.”   

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