Call us now on 07 3390 5721

How Machines Work: The Bagger 288

How Machines Work: The Bagger 288
June 22, 2021 APT Spray Painting

We’re taking heavy machinery to the next level with this instalment of ‘How Machines Work’. The Bagger 288, a mining monster, is one of the largest land vehicles in existence. It’s a humble bucket wheel excavator, that has the power to hail out an entire city on its own. If you need to move a fairly large chunk of dirt, or perhaps a mountain, the Bagger 288 is your go-to piece of excavating equipment. Read on to learn about this fascinating piece of excavating equipment. 


History Of The Bagger 288 

How exactly did this mammoth machinery come into existence? This excavator was built by German company, Krupp, now known as ThyssenKrupp. This piece of mining equipment was created to remove coal and excess rock from the Hambach mine in Germany. It was engineered to make shorter work of mining and earthmoving compared to typical drill and blast mining. All in all, the design and manufacturing of this vehicle took five years, while the assembly of the vehicle chewed up another five years. In total, the Bagger 288 cost $100 million and has a projected lifespan of around 40 years.

Just How Big Is The Bagger 288?

The Bagger 288 can dig through 240,000 tons of rock a day, so naturally, this machine is pretty big. Being one of the largest machines on earth, the Bagger 288 is 30 stories tall. The height of the bucket wheel alone is almost 22 metres, which is about the same height as a seven-story building. When empty, the Bagger 288’s 18 buckets weigh almost 3.5 tonnes and can haul 230 cubic feet of soil at a time. This piece of excavating equipment even managed to surpass Apollo spacecraft and NASA’s Crawler Transporter as the largest vehicle in the world

How Does The Bagger 288 Work? 

By now, you’ve probably gathered that this piece of heavy machinery was engineered to move *big* chunks of earth. With the Bagger 288’s impressive capabilities come some impressive features. Four conveyor belts in the vehicle receive the soil or rocks, taken from the buckets. The materials collected are then transported at 18 kilometres per hour by the heavy-duty excavator. The conveyor belts are each 3.2 metres wide. At this width, they can easily transport a smart car.


Where Is The Bagger 288 Used?

This heavy mining equipment is used for work in open-pit mines. The Bagger 288 relies on its revolving wheel of buckets, which work as a shovel, to constantly shift 8.5 million cubic feet of dirt a day. Once this impressive machine has reached a seam of brown coal or lignite, it will then harvest up to 265,000 tons of fuel a day. 

How Is The Bagger 288 Powered?

Electricity is fed to this mega machine by 1.7 kilometres of electrical cables, which is equivalent to the electricity consumption of a city housing 20,000 people. This vehicle has also undergone some significant industrial spray painting. The Bagger 288 has been painted with a whopping 33.9 tonnes of paint. This vehicle consists of two pylons at 45 metres each and relies on 2.2 kilometres of steel suspension cables. Oh, and it only takes 5 people to operate the Bagger 288.

How Fast Is The Bagger 288?

Perhaps we should instead ask how slow the Bagger 288 is. While this machine is massively productive in terms of earthmoving, it can only move at roughly 0.5 kilometres per hour on three rows of caterpillar track assemblies. Therefore, for the Bagger 288, it’s safe to say that slow and steady wins the race. Also, if this machine needed to cross a motorway, the road would need to be re-built, as the Bagger 288’s weight would crush the cement. 

APT Spray Painting Knows Heavy Machinery

The team at APT Spray Painting frequently works with heavy machinery. Our industrial spray painting services have been widely used across the mining industry for all kinds of heavy machinery and excavating equipment. Our paint keeps your machines looking brand new while protecting them from Australia’s harsh climatic conditions. We provide industrial spray painting services for any piece of machinery that will fit inside our versatile booth. If you want to keep your mining equipment in excellent condition, be sure to contact our helpful team at APT Spray Painting today.