Modeling of the limiting digging force of hydraulic excavator based on resistance characteristics


  • Zhigui REN School of Mechanical Engineering, Shaanxi University of Technology
  • Junli WANG Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Industrial Automation, Shaanxi University of Technology
  • Zhihong ZOU State Key Laboratory of Mechanic Transmission, Chongqing University
  • Yanyan WANG School of Mechanical Engineering, Shaanxi University of Technology
  • Haojie ZHU School of Mechanical Engineering, Shaanxi University of Technology



hydraulic excavator, digging resistance, theoretical digging force, limiting digging force


Based on the resistance characteristics, a model of theoretical  digging force was proposed in this paper, taking the tangential force, the normal force, and the bending moment into account simultaneously. Utilizing the relation among the normal resistance, the resistance moment, and the tangential resistance in practical digging process, three independent unknown quantities are transformed into only one variable. Afterwards, according to different digging patterns and complete machine limiting conditions, this research derived the constraint inequalities of the limiting digging force (LDF) and established the calculation models for LDF. Then, based on the value distribution laws of the digging resistance coefficient and the resistance moment coefficient, the calculation process and corresponding method of LDF under a given digging posture were obtained. Taking the digging resistance obtained by testing for 35 t hydraulic excavator with backhoe attachment as the reference, this paper compared the calculation results of the theoretical digging force for complete machine with those of the LDF model proposed in this research. The comparative results indicate that the LDF is consistent with the fact that the theoretical digging force is larger than or at least equal to the actual digging resistance. So, the LDF can exactly show the real limiting digging ability of the excavator more accurately. In this way, it can provide basis for mechanism optimization, structural strength design, trajectory planning, and control automation of the excavator.