Mining companies want giant haul trucks to carry 500 tons. Today's threshold is 400 tons, and the biggest limitation is the availability of massive tires and engines. Cummins has the second part covered: The company plans to build a new 4,000-horsepower diesel in Seymour, Ind., by 2015.
The new QSK95 powerplant "moves Cummins into a significantly higher power class, and we know that many of our customers have been eagerly anticipating us making that move," says Mark Levett, vice president and general manager of Cummins' high-horsepower business. The 95-liter mill, in 16 cylinders, is the first in a range of diesel and natural-gas engines that Cummins plans to roll out in V-12, V-16 and V-20 configurations, with outputs of up to 5,000 hp.
This leapfrogs an existing 18-cylinder, 78-liter, 3,500-hp engine, which powers such behemoths as Liebherr's T282, the Swiss manufacturer's 400-ton mining truck. The new engine is Columbus, Ind.-based Cummins' largest diesel in the firm's 92-year history, representing the effort of 150 engineers over three years and $100 million invested at Seymour.
Performing the work of about 12 Dodge Ram heavy-duty pickup trucks, the quad-turbocharged diesel employs common-rail fuel injectors that operate at about 32,000 psi. A ductile-iron, skirted block provides strength, and a selective-catalytic-reduction system zaps emissions.
The QSK95 will power other machines, such as freight trains and offshore drills. As a generator, it will supply 3.5 MW—enough juice for 2,000 homes.