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May 18, 2019

Earth-moving equipment: commonly used machinery types and their applications in construction


In recent years, the demand for modern infrastructure has grown exponentially. The government has launched a number of plans, such as achieving universal housing by 2022, PMAY and smart city missions, which require either the construction of new infrastructure or the upgrading of existing infrastructure. These plans can only have a positive impact on the construction industry and the construction equipment industry. According to a report released by Business Wire, India's real estate market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 11.54% by 2020, and its valuation will reach Rs 121,000 crore by 2020, while India’s construction equipment industry is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate. The annual growth rate is 6.8% between FY18 and FY24.


Due to its size and importance, the most easily identifiable machinery on any construction site is earth-moving equipment, which is ubiquitous in various applications in the construction industry. They are used in various earthwork projects, including laying foundations, leveling soil, removing dust and rocks, digging trenches, demolition projects, etc. These complex machines are operated by professionals. Different types of earth-moving machinery can complete different types of tasks, and due to technological advances in the industry, there are various types of earth-moving machinery on the market today that can meet almost any type of construction activity.



Backhoe Loaders


Skid-Steer Loaders



1. Excavators

These heavy machines consist of a hopper and a long arm, with a bucket attachment at the end of the long arm. They use hydraulic systems to function. The operator controls the excavator from a basic cab that can rotate 3600. The basic cab is placed on a supporting structure with wheels or tracks. Excavators are widely used in small and large construction sites. Their applications include excavation, demolition, heavy lifting, leveling, beautification, mining, dredging, etc.


2. Backhoe Loaders

A backhoe loader or backhoe is a machine mounted on a tire, with a shovel at the front and a bucket connected to the back end of the bucket. They look very similar to agricultural tractors, and their mobility makes them very suitable for use in urban areas. The backhoe loader is a medium-sized machine that can be used for applications such as excavation engineering, trenching, placing pipes, filling trenches, and lifting materials. Some backhoe loaders have retractable buckets that can be replaced with other equipment for construction activities or buckets of various sizes, which can be used for applications such as digging trenches with different widths.



3. Bulldozers

Bulldozers are considered to be one of the heaviest machines that can be found on construction sites, and one of its most common applications is to move large amounts of dirt or soil in large and empty construction sites. They have a large metal plate in the front, which can be moved up and down to a certain depth or within a certain angle range using two hydraulic pistons. In addition to moving the soil, they can also be used for coarse classification, fine crushing, crushing or removing rocks, etc.


4. Skid-Steer Loaders

As the name suggests, they are small machines mounted on tires that can skid along their own axis, so they are very suitable for construction sites with limited space. The tread pattern used in the tire ensures minimal impact on the final construction site and can limit soil compaction. These machines have good grip on snow and mud. Most skid steer loaders commonly available in the market can be equipped with different accessories and can be used for a variety of applications, such as mud or snow movement, excavation works, soil compaction, drilling, lifting loads, etc.


5. Trenchers

A trencher is a bulldozer used to dig trenches, usually for pipes, cables, or drainage purposes. The excavated material is deposited next to the trench through the conveying system of the trencher. Different types of trenchers can be used, and the suitability of the trencher, the structural requirements or the firmness of the surface to be trenched will be different. Openers are usually mounted on rails or wheels.

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