At World of Concrete 2020, Retrofitting Diesel Equipment With Lithium-Ion Batteries
Small firm Green Machine is targeting contractors' aging fleets
For those thinking about electrification, Green Machine provides a custom retrofit of diesel-powered small equipment to run off of lithium-ion batteries. At this year’s World of Concrete trade show, held Feb. 4-7 in Las Vegas, interest in the concept was real. The battery-powered mini hydraulic excavators and portable light towers on offer by the company, ideal for indoor applications, sold out, according to a company spokesperson.
The retrofit mini excavators offered come in two models: the 7-ft, 2.2-in. e210 and the 8-ft, 2.6-in. e240. Both have a 9-hr run time. The e210 can charge from either a 110V or 220V outlet, with a 2-hour charge time using the latter. The e240 uses a 220V outlet to charge in 10 hours.
The electric light tower is silent, according to the company. It has a 20-hour run time and can be recharged using either a 110V or 220V outlet. It will charge in 5 hours using a 220V outlet.
The batteries come with a three-year warranty. In addition to the equipment retrofits, the company also sells a battery system that can serve as a generator or backup power supply, and can shift load during peak demand.
Large equipment manufacturers have made some inroads into battery-powered compact equipment, but slow growth has created opportunities for smaller companies to step up.
Green Machine launched in 2010 and is now a subsidiary, along with lithium-ion battery distributor Volta Energy Products, of Viridi Parente, Buffalo, N.Y. The parent company announced in December 2019 that it had secured $29 million in a Series B funding round led by Grand Oaks Capital, also based in Western New York.
It takes about a week for Green Machine to retrofit a piece of equipment at its Buffalo, N.Y., shop at the site of the former American Axle & Manufacturing auto plant, which has been redeveloped to provide space for small manufacturers and startups.