It’s not snowing yet, but if summer continues like this, it probably will be soon. That’s why it’s better to start getting ready for the winter season. Clearing very wide, snow-covered roads is a particular challenge for the snow ploughing service every year. Aebi Schmidt has developed a new snow plough that can clear motorways with just one plough with a working width of over six metres – an advantage in many respects.
In the past, two-lane or three-lane motorways have been cleared in winter using a front-mounted plough and an additional, fold-out lateral plough. However, that’s ‘snow’ in the past, as Aebi Schmidt has developed the Tarron HP-2W – a high-performance snow plough with a multi-blade, fold-out plough system that can clear a width of over six metres with a single plough.
2W stands for ‘two wings’, i.e. two fold-out wings that have a total width of 7.2 m. Since the plough works with a 30° work angle, it effectively clears 6.2 m of road. It therefore achieves more or less the same clearing width as the previous configuration with an additional lateral plough, but only one plough is required combined with, ideally, a four-axle truck over 18 t as a carrier vehicle.
The trend towards four-axle trucks as clearing vehicles on motorways instead of the lighter, three-axle vehicles that were previously used has been growing in recent years. Among other things, because of the Euro 6 emission standard that has been introduced, the load volume of the trucks is more critical and because of the additional filters, the installation of side ploughs is made more difficult. A four-axle vehicle solves this problem, but the additional axle means it no longer offers enough mounting space for a lateral plough. The Tarron HP-2W kills two birds with one (multi-blade) stone. It not only makes the lateral plough obsolete, but can even be driven with a three-axle without being overloaded owing to its ideally located centre of gravity approx. 40 cm before the vehicle’s mounting plate. The only requirement here is a nine-tonne front axle.
In addition to the full working width of over six metres, the folding positions of the two wings with different widths enable three further working widths: 5.1 m when the left wing is folded in, 4.5 m when the right wing is folded in, and 3.4 m when both are fully folded in. The folded side elements are automatically raised so as not to hinder the clearing progress of the active elements. In both transport and clearing positions, the wings can be hydraulically folded in to minimise the passing width. Three sensors ensure that the wings do not damage the vehicle as they are folded.
One advantage of the folding technology of the Tarron HP-2W in comparison to the telescopic clearing blade is the adjustment of the six individually suspended blade segments to the road contour, so small obstacles can be automatically driven over, even at high speeds. For technical reasons, it is not possible to integrate such features in telescopic ploughs, and they cannot therefore achieve such a clean clearing result.
In addition, the folding mechanism of the Tarron HP-2W is less susceptible to frontal force effects than the telescopic mechanism because the individual suspension of the blades allows them to spring back a little when impacted, thus preventing damage to the plough. Furthermore, the hydraulic valves open automatically in the event of overpressure due to a collision, whereby the wings simply fold in.
Owing to its sophisticated, multi-blade, fold-out plough system, which can automatically adapt to uneven road surfaces thanks to the individual suspension of the blade segments, the Tarron HP-2W can clear a width of 3.4 to 6.2 m, even at high speeds – and the LED position lights always mark the current working width. This ensures the safety of not only the Tarron HP-2W and its driver, but also of overtaking vehicles. So we’re all set for winter.