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John Deere Dedicated to Emissions Solutions on All Fronts

Fri October 09, 2009 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

John Deere Construction & Forestry is committed to partnering with its customers to provide solutions to their fleet emissions challenges, according to the manufacturer.

This commitment is well under way, with wide-ranging information resources available on the Web, fleet emissions training for customers, electrification/hybrid research and development, as well as a choice of technology path for Interim Tier IV (iT4) and work on the options to help owners meet Final Tier IV (fT4).

A Solid Web Presence

John Deere Construction & Forestry’s Web site,, now features a dedicated “John Deere Emissions Solutions” section prominently displayed, where fleet owners can learn about emissions solutions, specific Tier IV technologies and access a fleet emissions reporting tool.

Owners and managers also can learn about Deere’s engine offerings, retrofit and repower solutions, and find links to the EPA, CARB, the Diesel Technology Forum and more. And, there’s a chart detailing emissions regulations with dates of enforcement.

In addition to the Web resources, there’s fleet emission training directly from John Deere available to equipment users.

Powering Equipment’s Future

Just as automobile manufacturers have gained a great deal of attention with hybrid cars, electrification and hybrid solutions for construction equipment may play an integral role in fT4 and beyond.

Research and development are being driven not only by emissions regulations but also by the needs for increased fuel economy, noise suppression and lower life cycle costs. There also is the potential for fewer moving parts and more material moved per gallon of fuel.

Banking on the future of electrification of many types of on- and off-highway vehicles, Phoenix International, a John Deere Company, is continuing to develop electronic components, for use on both Deere equipment as well as for sales to outside equipment manufacturers.

Many are predicting a strong future for vehicle electrification, ranging from replacing individual hydraulic or mechanical components with electric motors to electric powertrains to hybrids to complete electrically powered vehicles.

With these possibilities in front of them, Phoenix, part of the newly formed John Deere Intelligent Solutions Group, is significantly expanding its product portfolio with the development of a line of power inverters, a basic building block in electric drives.

Founded in 1987, Phoenix became a wholly owned John Deere company in 1999.

As part of the John Deere Intelligent Solutions Group, Phoenix can now also draw from resources company-wide, including Deere’s telematics and an array of GPS technologies.

Deere introduced its first machine with electric drives in 2005 with the launch of the Series 2500E greens mower. An updated version of that mower was introduced in late 2008. On the 2500E, electric motors drive the cutting reels. A 48V, 90-amp alternator is belt-driven by the engine, providing consistent cutting power to the units at all times.

Deere followed the greens mower with the introduction of its e-Premium agricultural tractor at the Agritechnica show in Europe in November 2007. The e-Premium tractors can generate up to 20 kW via a crankshaft-driven generator, to power components such as the water pump, cooling fan, air-conditioning pump and the air brake compressor. It also can provide power for external tools via 230V and 400V power outlets.

Now, driven by Tier IV emissions regulations, as well as fuel economy, performance, productivity and environmental considerations, combined with cost reduction, reliability and safety factors, Phoenix is introducing an expanded portfolio of power electronics products. These include both Class A inverters — 12, 24 and 48V units generating up to 10 kW; and 350V/700V Class B inverters generating up to 300 kW.

Phoenix sees the inverters as replacements for mechanical and electrohydraulic systems in off-highway machines, such as construction equipment, along with trucks and buses, and turf equipment, as well as drive-system electrification.

Interim Tier IV/Final Tier IV

John Deere will use cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) engines with exhaust filters consisting of a diesel oxidation catalyst/diesel particulate filter in its construction equipment to meet the 2011 iT4/Stage III B emissions regulations mandated by the EPA and EU for diesel engines 174 hp (130 kW) and above.

Deere believes cooled EGR with exhaust filters is the right technology right now. Technologies such as cooled EGR, variable geometry turbochargers and exhaust filters will likely be the foundation technologies for meeting fT4 regulations. Deere engineers are constantly evaluating emerging technologies for their effectiveness and durability in off-highway applications.

Deere’s approach to the iT4 solution builds upon the current clean burning and fuel-efficient Tier III/Stage III A PowerTech Plus engine platform manufactured by John Deere Power Systems.

The John Deere cooled EGR engine platform for iT4 compliance is more operator friendly and less complex to maintain compared to SCR (selective catalytic reduction) systems.

Unlike SCR, this iT4 EGR solution doesn’t require liquid urea to achieve emissions compliance, so there are no additional fluids to worry about obtaining, filling or storing on remote job sites at proper temperatures. Diesel fuel is the only fluid involved in the EGR solution.

John Deere was the first manufacturer to widely commercialize off-highway Tier III/Stage III A cooled EGR diesel engines and has many cooled EGR engines currently operating in the field, according to the manufacturer.

John Deere designs, manufactures and services the engine, drivetrain, hydraulics, electronic control unit, cooling and other vehicle systems as part of the complete equipment package. This integrated approach maximizes performance, operator convenience and fuel economy, all with an eye toward providing overall value to customers, according to the manufacturer.

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