Linde expands range of lithium-ion trucks
07 June 2017
Linde Material Handling will be able to offer lithium-ion options for all its forklift models up to five tonnes by the end of 2017, and is rapidly expanding its portfolio of warehouse trucks with new models including features to improve operator safety and reduce downtime.
The new releases include several new pallet and stacker trucks and five counterbalance trucks ranging from 1.4 to 1.8 tonnes where both the truck and battery will be covered by the Linde CE mark having passed extensive safety and functional testing.
The new Linde T16L ION pallet truck and Linde D08 ION double stacker come with varying battery sizes and charging times. The latest pallet truck is available with an easy-charge system comprising a side mounted battery connector so that operators only need to plug the charging cable into an external socket on the truck instead of opening lids or flaps. This will make opportunity charging more convenient.
The design of the pallet and double stacker trucks centre on operator comfort and productivity. Both feature an ergonomic lift function which raises the load arms, in the case of the T16L ION, by 635mm making it easier for operators to pick up and position heavier loads and allow the truck to be used as a mobile work bench. The D08 ION on the other hand is designed as a double stacker with a selection of masts offering lift heights up to 2110mm allowing the truck to handle two loads at the same time for loading or unloading double deck trailers.
David Bowen, Linde’s UK warehouse truck product manager said: “We’ve fitted a range of safety and comfort features including spring loaded castor-wheels on the D08 ION for stability and traction when operating over dock levellers, a creep speed option on both models for operation in confined spaces and buzzer alerts to replace horns in noise-sensitive environments.”
The T16L is also available with an automatic lifting and lowering function using light sensors attached to the truck’s mast to detect loads. The lift mast automatically lifts the forks avoiding operators having to bend down. All lifting functions can be controlled manually to save time while unloading.
During charging, the traction circuit is locked out for safety. Pallet truck li-ion batteries range from 1.8kWh to 9kWh depending on how much power is required.
In addition to the pallet and double stacker trucks, Linde has introduced five new lithium-ion counterbalance trucks to its range.
These new models have a variety of safety features including a centralised control system and shock sensor to monitor impact and possible damage. The counterbalance trucks include technology which converts regenerative braking energy into heat, instead of feeding it back into the battery, preventing overcharging.
These trucks automatically reduce performance in the event of a technical defect and there is a 25mm thick steel box surrounding the battery cells preventing damage in a collision. This design has been extensively tested at Linde’s factory in Aschaffenburg by a controlled crash tests where a laden 8-tonne forklift truck was deliberately driven, at full speed, into the side of a 3-tonne li-ion truck, ably demonstrating that the lithium-ion battery could withstand even in such an extreme impact event.
Zuzana Golisova, Linde’s UK counterbalance truck product manager, said: “Our new range of lithium-ion trucks is a great innovation for our customers who are always looking to decrease downtime. The high level of energy stored in the batteries results in faster charging. Extensive tests have shown the batteries increase uptime, meaning less time is needed to recharge the li-ion batteries resulting in greater efficiency. The new models include the E14 and E16C compact trucks, both compatible with small batteries of 13.1kWh and the E16, E18 and E16P which have a greater battery capacity of 16.3kWh.
“Each lithium-ion battery can be charged using one of two different chargers, the power of the charger and battery size determines re-charging speed. For example, it takes around 50 minutes to charge the small battery with a large charger, useful for sites which require a short downtime period when trucks are constantly in demand. Linde guarantees the trucks will still have at least 80% of their original battery capacity after more than 2,500 full charging cycles, making lithium-ion drive technology a cost-effective solution for customers in multi-shift operations.”