Development of a Battery-powered Electric Power Unit

Highly Evaluated for On-site Pilot Phase

2024.2.16 NEWS RELEASE

Significant Expansion of Zero-emission Press-in Construction Sites

GIKEN LTD. (Head Office: Kochi-shi, President: Atsushi Ohira) has developed a battery-powered electric power unit that enables zero emission of carbon dioxide during press-in construction and has completed the pilot phase. This unit serves as the power source for hydraulic press-in and extraction machinery manufactured and sold by our company and can be used with SILENT PILERTM F101 and SILENT PILERTM SX1. Unlike products using an external power supply, it does not require continuous connection to a power cable, thus avoiding constraints on mobility. Its easy on-site deployment allows for a significant expansion of zero-emission press-in construction sites that do not emit carbon dioxide. In the pilot phase conducted in December 2023, high praise was received from construction personnel regarding the ease of construction on-site. Moving forward, we will swiftly identify improvement points for mass production and provide feedback for further development, aiming for a prompt market launch.

In pursuit of carbon neutrality, our company aims to achieve zero shipments of diesel engine power units by 2050. We have already developed an externally powered electric power unit compatible with the electric GYRO PILERTM and introduced it into the World Heritage listed canal project in the Netherlands*. Furthermore, the externally powered electric power unit MU200, compatible with eight of our company's main products, is scheduled to be launched in the EU market from 2024. Amidst the global urgency for decarbonisation of construction sites and electrification of construction machinery, the introduction of battery power units to enhance convenience is expected to significantly expand the press-in market and zero-emission press-in construction globally.

■ Key Features of the New Electric Power Unit

Adoption of Electric Motor Enables Zero Emission of Carbon Dioxide
Instead of a diesel engine, the machine obtains hydraulic power by driving the hydraulic pump with an electric motor. When performing press-in construction with the conventional diesel engine model (EU200L4), approximately 903kg of carbon dioxide is emitted until the tank is emptied (350 litres of diesel). However, this unit emits no carbon dioxide at all.

Enhanced Convenience with Battery-powered Operation
Due to being battery-powered, there is no need for extensive charging facilities, and there are no restrictions on the machine's mobility caused by a constant wired power supply. It is equipped with a "Battery Mode" and "Assist Mode" that can be selected according to the on-site conditions.

Battery Mode
Operates solely on battery power.
By charging the battery at night during non-working hours, it can be operated during the day (approximately 6 hours*).

* May vary depending on working conditions and operating status.

Assist Mode
Operates using both the battery and either a generator or commercial power supply.
Continuous power supply from an external source enables sustained operation over a long period of time. With assistance from the battery, the power consumption of the generator or commercial power supply is reduced, allowing for downsizing of the generator and transformer. This facilitates easy installation and reduces equipment costs.

Improved Responsiveness of Press-in Machines
Diesel engine-powered units require time to reach maximum output as they rely on burning diesel fuel to generate power. On the other hand, electric power units can instantly achieve maximum output, leading to improved responsiveness of press-in machines. When connected to SILENT PILERTM F101 or SILENT PILERTM SX1, responsiveness to basic operations such as down-stroke/up-stroke and gripping is improved. This results in increased construction speed and shorter project durations.

Significant Improvement in Energy Efficiency
According to data from our company's demonstration tests, the diesel fuel consumed to by the generator (125kVA)—used to charge the battery—when using this unit to undertake press-in is about one-third of the diesel fuel consumed when using the conventional diesel engine model (EU200L4). Electricity tends to be cheaper than diesel fuel, and if charging with a commercial power supply instead of a generator is feasible, running costs can be further reduced.

■Summary of Pilot Phase Results

In December 2023, at a site near Umeda in Osaka-shi, GIKEN SEKO CO., LTD. (Head Office: Kochi-shi, President: Akihiro Nishigawa), one of our group companies, conducted press-in construction using the SILENT PILERTM SX1. Over 13 days, they managed to carry out press-in for 320 steel sheet piles and construct retaining walls required for the removal of underground passages as part of redevelopment. The batteries were charged and powered using the biofuel-powered generator Shindaiwa DGM600MK-P* (manufactured by YAMABIKO CORPORATION) which contributes toward carbon neutrality.

Demonstrations were conducted in both Battery Mode and Assist Mode, yielding results as expected. Construction personnel highly praised the ease of deployment and practicality of the equipment, noting its fast operation.

*Reference: YAMABIKO CORPORATION Website (Japanese only)

■Future Outlook

Environmental regulations and on-site conditions vary by country, influencing the types of products used and the specifications required. We believe that offering optimal decarbonisation technologies tailored to these regulations and conditions will expand customer choices, thereby helping to grow the press-in industry and accelerate the realisation of carbon neutrality. Going forward, we will expedite the commercialisation and mass production of this equipment and increase our proportion of electrified products.

Additionally, we will develop power units compatible with various energy sources such as biofuels, synthetic fuels, and hydrogen, contributing to achieving carbon neutrality.

■Basic Performance*

Rated output160kW (217ps)
Battery capacity214kWh
Charging timeApproximately 5 hours (* when using 60kVA)
Power supply methodCommercial power supply or generator (power supply capacity of 60kVA or more)
VoltageAC200V range for commercial power supply (converted to AC400V range using a transformer)
AC400V range for generators (* 50/60Hz)
Hydraulic oil tank capacity490 litres
Overall length3,540mm
Overall width2,085mm
Overall height2,360mm
Gross mass (including crawler)7,650kg (for specification with 20m hose)
Compatible models (as of February 2024)SILENT PILERTM F101, SILENT PILERTM SX1

*Subject to change due to ongoing development.

Profile of GIKEN Group
GIKEN developed SILENT PILERTM, the world’s first reaction-based hydraulic pile jacking machine, installing piles without noise or vibration. GIKEN Group now actively promotes its press-in technology worldwide and contributes to the construction industry by proposing and implementing innovative solutions. The innovative press-in technology provides a unique solution and the adoption of this technology has spread to over 40 nations and regions.


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