The market for soil compactors in India has been growing at a steady pace. An estimated 3500 units of compactors are being sold in India annually in the recent few years, out of which roughly about 50% are soil compactors. Whether it is asphalt compactors or soil compactors, the thrust from manufacturers has been on machines that will achieve optimum compaction with the minimum number of passes. The trend that has been witnessed in the Indian compaction market is the movement towards vibratory compaction from the earlier predominantly static rollers. The technology helps send pressure waves into the soil surface in different directions leading to the particles achieving a dense state of orientation. Just as in the case of the other types of construction equipment, contractors have realized that the initial higher capital investment is bound to pay off in the long run, given the cost savings achieved due to the lesser number of passes.
Manufacturers are also focusing on coming out with machines that are fuel efficient and require minimal maintenance, all adding to the good news for contractors. With competition, intensifying suppliers are concentrating on coming out with machines that would ideally suit Indian working conditions, where typically these machines would be put through more number of work cycles, as compared to the developed world. Global players who have entered the fray in India have been getting feedback from end-users and have been focusing their R&D towards machines that are specifically suited for India.
A rapidly evolving market, India is today on the radar of almost every leading global manufacturer of compaction equipment. Competition is getting intense by the day and suppliers are banking on innovative product features and technology to woo customers. A lot of focus is also on offering environment-friendly and fuel-efficient engines these days.
The innovations in the market: Catering to growing need and rough terrain
Customised for Indian condition
Over the years, customization has foreseen a huge demand and the key players have noticed this growing demand and are now catering to these services. CASE Construction Equipment, unveiled its latest new product – the 752EX Vibratory Tandem Compactor during Excon keeping in mind the customization factor. The CASE 752EX is equipped with a fuel-efficient 3.9-liter 4-cylinder engine, with a mechanical injection system and internal exhaust gas recirculation that delivers 76 HP at 2200 rpm and torque of 332 Nm at 1300 rpm. This new-generation engine – developed by CNH Industrial subsidiary FPT Industrial, the world-leading manufacturer of engines, transmissions, and powertrains – provides outstanding performance, fast response times, and best-in-class fuel economy. The 752EX’s single- piece engine hood gives easy access for routine maintenance, with all daily service points conveniently accessible at ground level. The 752EX’s operator compartment features a rotating operator seat which gives the excellent front and rear drum/nozzle visibility, making the drive and compaction process easier and safer. The look of the machine is enhanced by two post canopies and by new fuel and water tanks.
Mr. Abhijit Gupta, Brand Leader, CASE Construction Equipment India said: “The new 752EX will strengthen CASE’s leadership position in the compactor segment, in which we are the only company to have sold more than 10,000 units in India. These new products are examples of how CASE stays ahead of the curve by constantly innovating and upgrading its machines to meet customers’ needs, and our manufacturing facility at Pithampur is the testimony to our commitment to ‘Make in India’.”
Fuel efficiency and multiple applications
Whatever come or may fuel efficiency is perhaps the most pivotal point of consideration for any buyer depending on the project needs. Moreover, better the applicability of the machines, more is its economic gratification. In this regard JCB has been doing a quality service. JCB India offers a range of road compaction equipment with three world-class products – the VMT330 (a 3T Class Mini Tandem Roller), the VMT 860 eco (a 9T Class Tandem Roller) and the JCB116 (a 11T Class Soil Compactor), a latest introduction in the Compaction range.
The JCB116 Soil Compactor is the new world-class machine that comes fitted with a state-of-the-art JCB Diesel Max engine, providing fuel savings in the range of 5-10%. Equipped with a variable fan as standard, the engine delivers a massive 430 Nm of torque at low engine speeds for optimum responsiveness. It provides unmatched fuel consumption in its class of machines. In order to make compaction operation more efficient, Compaction Monitoring System (CMS) has been introduced in JCB116 – an industry first feature from JCB India. Integrated with JCB’s Livelink technology, CMS allows operators to monitor compaction in real-time, thus enhancing machine and operator efficiency. The first ever CMS in India with telematics connectivity, it enables consistent and uniform compaction through precise measurement and with accuracy. Suitable for both asphalt and soil surfaces, it allows operation in two modes auto and manual, displaying both frequency and amplitude of vibrations.
JCB also offers the VMT330 Mini Tandem Roller and The VMT860eco Tandem Roller in its compactor range. The VMT330 Mini Tandem Roller is best suited for applications such as highway road shoulders, retaining the walls of flyovers, for the compaction of road shoulders, footpaths, trenches, service roads, industrial and residential columns and rural roads. The VMT860eco Tandem Roller is equipped with the latest hydraulics from Germany. The VMT860eco offers greater visibility for ease of operation and is equipped with an automatic water sprinkler system which minimises the effort. Both these machines have an auto dust removal system and provide unmatched operator comfort which ultimately increases efficiency and maximize productivity.
All the JCB compactors offer lifetime lubricated center joints and also offer grease-free bearings. This saves the costs of lubrication and also reduces the possibility of failures due to any negligence in greasing the joints. In our range of world class Compactors, vibrations and heat levels are kept lowest to provide a comfortable work environment. Moreover, operator friendly and ergonomically located controls with joystick help in easy machine operation.
Escort Equipment too is providing high end functional machines which are fuel efficient in performance. The company’s Compaction products portfolio is one of the most exhaustive in the country. Their machines are equipped with the best aggregates from leading international technology companies and laden with high-end features. Ideal for road compaction and relaying, these machines are one of the most productive, economical and rugged in their segments. Their compaction range consists of Soil Vibratory Roller, Tandem Vibratory Roller and Mini Tandem Vibratory Roller. Escorts EC 2420 delivers the ideal results including high productivity & low cost of operation. Being the only one in the weight category gave it the requisite edge. EC 5250 vibratory soil compactor too has been redesigned & comes with enhanced safety. With highest gradeability & travelling speed, EC 5250 is the most fuel efficient m/c in its class.
Tackling even the most demanding jobs
The biggest challenge of Indian construction especially tough terrains provides resistance and is always a hard work for operators. Therefore the machines have to be stringent enough to address the rough terrains. Volvo in this regard is doing an efficient service. Volvo soil compactors are versatile machines that can efficiently compact varying soils and aggregates in applications such as highways, utilities, water retention structures, as well as in the preparation of large residential, commercial and industrial sites. There are many features on each Volvo compactor which help them deliver more productivity and efficiency to users. The company’s highly-anticipated new EC200D excavator joined a host of other machinery on the Volvo CE booth at this year’s Excon 2017 in Bangalore, India. The new EC200D excavator from Volvo CE is the star of the company’s line up. Volvo is expecting strong interest in the EC200D, which has been specifically designed for general construction work. Featuring Volvo’s famed fuel efficiency, the new machine also has a bucket breakout force of 123 kN and an arm tear out force of 96 kN, which help it deliver high job site productivity and fast cycle times. Alongside the EC200D was its sister machine, the EC210D. Like the EC200D, the EC210D is a 20-ton rated machine, but it has been tailored for more heavy-duty applications, such as mining and quarry work, as well as general construction. The third excavator on the Volvo booth that drew large crowds at Excon 2017 was the huge EC950E. This 90-ton rated heavyweight is the largest excavator in the Volvo line. Its maximum bucket capacity is 6 m3, while its breakout force of 424 kN and arm tear out force of 408 kN help deliver the machine’s unparalleled digging performance.
Applications on smaller road construction landscaping sites along with big works
Along the ever demanding big projects, there is always a need work of small sites, which frankly could be a bit costly at times. In this regard, the Wirtgen Group offers Hamm range of compactors which are Economical and Effective. The articulated tandem rollers like the compact line HD 12 VV are perfectly adapted to applications on smaller road construction or landscaping sites. They are highly maneuverable for smaller areas and offer economical compaction on small sites. The HD series rollers like the HD 99 tandem roller made in India are perfectly designed for road construction and paving of large asphalt surfaces. Vibration and oscillation make them suitable for a variety of applications. They offer benefit to the operator in terms of comfort and visibility. The 311 soil Compactors and the 3520 Padfoot compactors for earthwork applications are characterized by high degree of comfort, outstanding ergonomic design, excellent field of vision and extremely powerful gradeability. The rubber wheeled rollers GRW 15 are used to compact asphalt pavements.
In recent months, HAMM compactors have been laying the foundations for a better road network in Punjab. One example of this is the construction of the new National Highway NH-52 from Moga to Shahkot. For compaction of the subbase, the construction firm Dilip Buildcon Ltd. employed several HAMM compactors 311. They are “made in India” produced in WIRTGEN India’s own factory in Pune.
For compaction of the subbase for the new road around Moga, Dilip Buildcon employed a total of 8 type 311 compactors. For the asphalt compaction, a number of HAMM type HD 99 tandem rollers were used. HAMM produces both machine types in its own factory in India.
The 311 compactor with the unique HAMM 3-point articulation was developed especially for India in a joint German-Indian team of engineers and has been in production in Pune for some years. With an operating weight of 11 t and a 2.14 m wide vibration drum it brings high compaction force and a large static linear load of up to 30 kg/cm to the construction site. This enables the machine to perform a wide range of tasks with ease.
While the recent times may have been tough on construction equipment manufacturers, the industry still is brimming with optimism. This is particularly true in the case of road building machinery manufacturers since there have been signals of a spurt in road construction activities.
Mr. Anant G. Geete, Hon’ble Union Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Government of India speaking at the inaugural session said, said, “under Prime Minister Modi’s leadership, the NDA government is trying to pave the way to lead India as a developed nation. In all these efforts, ‘Make in India’ is a pivotal initiative especially in the heavy industry sector. While we want foreign players to invest in India, our focus is also to encourage Indian companies to invest and grow in India. I am confident that the government will support all companies to make PM’s vision of ‘Make in India’ a successful one. The constitution of equipment makers has good opportunities as there is phenomenal investment being experienced in the Infrastructure sector and we have also launched a slew of schemes to promote the capital goods industry. In the coming years, around INR 7-8 lakh crore is expected to be spent.”
Ms Shobana Kamineni, President, CII said, “Construction industry remains the fundamental strength of the economy with important multiplier impact. Under the Make in India matrix, construction machinery as a key component of the capital goods sector contributes to India’s manufacturing prowess and is set to witness strong expansion”.
With competition becoming intense manufacturers too are faced with challenges to innovate. The entry of several global leaders in the field is a welcome development, since it brings in latest technology into the market. With major players having gained a solid presence in the Indian market, the next few years could see them further consolidating their position by bringing out newer models.