Visitors to ConExpo-CON/AGG 2020 in Las Vegas received a preview of Hitachi Solution Linkage Integrated Grade Control with Topcon — a new excavator technology developed in cooperation with Topcon that allows an operator to set a grade and hold it. The new integrated technology increases efficiency while also lowering daily operating costs.
"With Solution Linkage Integrated Grade Control with Topcon, our customers will combine the smooth hydraulics and fast cycle times of Hitachi excavators with advanced grade technology in one package," said Jonny Spendlove, product marketing manager, excavators, Hitachi Construction Machinery — Americas. "This technology is all about saving time and making good operators great. We're looking forward to providing that increased efficiency for our customers. Grade Control is truly the future of the excavator industry."
The new grade control option was previewed on a ZX350LC-6 at the Hitachi booth and will be offered on additional Hitachi Dash-6 construction excavators in the future.
With Hitachi Solution Linkage Integrated Grade Control with Topcon, the machine controls the boom and bucket as the operator handles the arm. This is especially useful as it reduces the need for multiple passes to achieve the correct grade. Likewise, less experienced operators are able to achieve the correct grade more efficiently while crew members who previously had to check for the grade can now be assigned elsewhere on the worksite.
The new technology also reduces the need for grade stakes while lowering the likelihood of over-excavation by preventing the machine from digging past a defined surface or elevation. With the prevention of over digging, operators can finish jobs more quickly, reduce material cost and save fuel costs, too.
Hitachi Solution Linkage Integrated Grade Control with Topcon arrives ready to work thanks to installation and calibration at the factory. The new system is also fully supported by Hitachi dealers. Machine integration helps ensure that key components such as sensors and harnesses are protected — increasing uptime.
Customers will have two options — 2D Grade Control or 3D Grade Control. The 2D Grade Control controls the elevation of the cutting edge in relation to a benchmark while the 3D Grade Control with Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) controls position and elevation with respect to a global reference. The 2D Grade Control solutions can also be upgraded to 3D solutions through Hitachi dealers. System data from both options works with ZXLink for analysis, so the machine's health can be monitored to keep projects on track.
Hitachi Solution Linkage Integrated Grade Control with Topcon will be available in the United States and Canada.