Developed and manufactured in Colmar (France), the Liebherr crawler excavator has an operating weight of approximately 100 tonnes. The diesel engine with an engine power of 420kW / 571HP complies with the exhaust emissions standards of stage IIIB / tier 4i. The company replaces the R 954 S-HD, which was used up to now, with the R 980 SME. After blasting the rock is transported to the crusher in dump trucks. Two Liebherr machines are now used for loading: the new R 980 SME and a L 586 wheel loader.
In the quarry belonging to the Pongratz family the process is timed exactly; the machines used therefore have to be compatible with each other. The R 980 SME is configured with a 6m³ HD bucket and designed to produce 400 tonnes per hour. The new crawler excavator is tailored to the throughput of the crusher in the company.
"The new excavator loads a dumper truck with 40 tonnes in four cycles and a dumper truck with 50 tonnes in five cycles," explains Ulrike Pongratz. "There is time then between the loading cycles for sorting and the drop ball operation", she adds.
The further development of the 15-hectare limestone quarry in Ensdorf-Wolfsbach requires a crawler excavator with high capacity. The tough geological conditions with uneven excavation beds, as well as a large area of solid rock with soil, can now be developed in the coming years using the R 980 SME.
"The experience and the technical know-how and expertise of Liebherr were also decisive factors for influencing our buying decision. The numerous protective devices available on the machine, together with a product range adapted especially for operation in the quarry, naturally played a huge role", explains Alexander Pongratz, the technical head of the family-run company.
The family-run company has been placing their trust in Liebherr for over 20 years now. There are good, long-standing relations between the customer, the authorised dealer and the production plant in Colmar. "We have always had good experiences with the crawler excavators from Liebherr. Even when there were problems, a solution was always found", adds Alexander Pongratz.