New Komatsu D61 dozers come with intelligent blade control

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  • Earthmovers & Exacavators

Komatsu's intelligent D61EXi-23 dozer. Komatsu's intelligent D61EXi-23 dozer.
Komatsu's intelligent D61EXi-23 dozer. Komatsu's intelligent D61EXi-23 dozer.

The new Komatsu D61EXi-23/D61PXi-23 dozer is an ‘intelligent’ machine control earthmover that uses a fully automatic blade control system to carry out both bulk and final trim dozing in automatic from start to finish with final grade performance.

Komatsu Australia construction general manager David Small says the dozer — the first in a new range of intelligent machines —incorporates an integrated durable and accurate off-blade sensor package, and represents the next generation in machine control.

"Not only can our new D61EXi-23/D61PXi-23 carry out automated finish grading — which has been a feature of dozer machine control systems for a number of years — but it can also make all passes using automatic blade control, from rough dozing to finish grading, forward and reverse," he says.

Small explains that, in bulk dozing, the dozers’ automatic blade control system monitors blade load, constantly adjusting blade elevation to minimise track slip.

"As work progresses closer to the required finish grade, the automatic blade control adjusts accordingly, to provide final trim performance with high-level precision," he adds. "Stroke-sensing cylinders measure the actual position of the blade at all times for highest-precision grading accuracy on any surface or grade."

The new dozers feature stroke-sensing hydraulic blade cylinders, a factory-installed cab-top GNSS (Global Navigation Satellite System) antenna, and an enhanced inertial measuring unit (IMU+), all installed during machine assembly and replacing the more typical ‘bolt-on’ blade-mounted machine control systems.

In addition, the D61EXi-23/D61PXi-23 features real-time online machine data collection through Komatsu’s KOMTRAX remote monitoring system integrated with Topcon’s construction management solutions.

Komatsu says its own tests show that the combination of automated bulk dozing and finish grading results in a productivity improvement of 9-13 percent over add-on machine control systems, and "significantly more" over manual dozing.

Run by Komatsu ecot3 SAA6D107E-2 engines rated at 125 kW, the dozer comes in two variants: the conventional D61EXi-23 and the low-ground pressure D61PXi-23.

The EX has an operating weight of 17.9 tonnes and a PAT blade capacity of 3.4 cubic metres, while the PX weighs in at 18.7 tonnes and has a blade capacity of 3.8 cubic metres.

Both have an F/R speed of 9 km/h.

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