The winner of the tender is the ATLAS excavator 340 LC blue. He prevailed in a tender by the Waterways and Shipping Office for the Mittelland/Elbe Lateral Canal. The 43 t excavator is equipped with a 180 KW/245 hp engine. The boom has a length of 16.3 m and can still lift 4.5 t with an extension of 11.50 m. The 340 LC blue is equipped with numerous attachments for its diverse tasks. These include from ATLAS a clamshell bucket with 800 l capacity, a multi-shell bucket with four grab arms and 900 l capacity, a ditch bucket with 2,200 mm width and 1,000 l capacity and a load hook that can carry up to 8 tonnes. The hydraulic system is filled with bio-oil and equipped with a bypass filter system.

Perfectly tuned machine

To ensure that the various grabs and buckets can be changed and used quickly, an ATLAS quick-change device is in use. The grabs are moved with the ATLAS turning device, which works with two rotary motors (without grab cylinder). The hose set with couplings and the quick-change joint clip are also from ATLAS. That is what is special and the great advantage – the technology that is used comes from a single source. The crawler excavator is manufactured at the ATLAS plant in Ganderkesee and the attachments at the Vechta plant. The respective design teams work together and in a coordinated manner. This creates a machine unit whose components are well matched to each other. This also makes it possible to optimise the weight of the attachments.

Helpful technology on board

A hydraulic coupling system is fitted to enable the hydraulic lines of the implements to be changed quickly. This allows the hose lines to be coupled or uncoupled, even under line pressure. The Vario cab, which can be raised by 2,000 mm and moved forward by 2,000 mm, provides the best view for the driver. The cameras, which offer a field of view of 270° around the rear and sides, also ensure a good overview and, moreover, safety. And an additional package of headlights illuminates the working area and surroundings as bright as day.

Working from the ship – telescopic undercarriage

The ATLAS 340 LC blue is stationed on the working ferry “Verden” of the WSA. This is 45 m long, 9 m wide and has a carrying capacity of up to 210 t. The tasks that the excavator has to perform are manifold. This includes the installation of large quantities of construction material (rock fills, fascines, etc.) at hydraulic construction sites and new construction, maintenance and repair of hydraulic structures (pile and sheet pile walls, groynes, bank revetments, dredging, etc.), the pulling and setting of inspection seals, grove and green maintenance work from the water and much more. The 43 t excavator was made even more stable by a hydraulically telescopic undercarriage. It can be hydraulically widened by 700 mm per side. When retracted, the machine has an outer width of 3,150 mm, when extended it has a width of 4,550 mm. This means that work on the shore is also possible without danger with the full extension of 17.4 m.

Maintenance of the waterways

The ATLAS excavator is located in the outskirts of Thune near Braunschweig. This belongs to the Mittelland-/Elbe-Seitenkanal Waterways and Shipping Office (formerly the offices of Minden, Braunschweig and Uelzen). Founded in 1923, it was designed in this form in 2020 after the great waterway reform. Together with its five branch canals and three connecting canals, the Mittellandkanal has a length of 380 km. Several locks and weirs make navigation possible. Ships with a load capacity of up to 2,100 t are allowed to sail here. This corresponds to 105 trucks with 20 t load capacity each. The outer district of Thune works with 40 employees on about 36 km of navigation channels with two locks, 29 bridges, many culverts, infiltration ditches, buildings, etc.

Atlas Hannover – best service always on site

Service for the 340 LC blue is provided by the dealer ATLAS Hannover Baumaschinen GmbH, who also sold it to the WSA. In 1980, he started working for ATLAS in the sales region of southern Lower Saxony. In the meantime, the area covered has been extended to just outside Berlin. With two sister companies, the company is represented at six locations and 120 employees are there for the customers. In addition to sales, rental and service of construction machinery, vehicle construction is also offered. The fact that all this is done with the customer in mind can be seen from the fact that the ATLAS 340 LC blue that has now been delivered meets the customer’s requirements exactly.

Character: 4.095

Photo 1: The ATLAS 340 LC blue drives onto its workplace, the working ferry “Verden”.

Photo 2+3: The 43 t dredger ATLAS 340 LC blue working on waterways and embankments from a ship.