STUTTGART, Germany – Ammann ARS 200 and ARS 220 Soil Compactors are utilising smart technology on a rail project between Stuttgart and Ulm, Germany.
The compactors are equipped with Ammann’s proprietary ACEforce Intelligent Compaction system. The machines are also utilising the Q Point data gathering system as they work on a new section of track for ICE trains.
The contractor handling compaction on the project is VINCI Construction Terrassement, located in Kemnat near Stuttgart. The contractor is a subsidiary of VINCI Construction Germany.
German railway Deutsche Bahn entrusted VINCI Construction Terrassement with the construction of a section of the high-speed line between the Stuttgart airport and Wendlingen. The construction required earthworks for a 5.4 km ICE track and 7.5 km of side roads. The project is ongoing and expected to take 24 months from start to finish.
Being utilised are an Ammann ARS 200 HX smooth drum roller and an Ammann ARS 220 HX padfoot drum roller. Both machines feature ACEforce, which measures compaction and assigns specific values to progress through a digital display. ACEforce can confirm that compaction targets have been met. It also enables data analysis through Ammann Documentation System (ADS).
In addition, the machines are equipped with a connected data acquisition system in cooperation with Q Point.
ARS series soil compactors are used at construction sites that require optimum compaction power, such as railways and airfields with highly-stressed bearing layers. Their fully hydrostatic drive provides higher performance on a cohesive, uneven or inclined surface.
ARS soil compactors use the Ammann Traction Control (ATC) system to achieve optimum traction power. ATC provides exceptional control of all three drives and prevents slippage. Innovative amplitude and vibration systems and a weight of 20 t or 22 t ensure effective compaction. The boosted HX drive used in the ARS series is ideal for construction sites where the machine’s climbing ability is essential.
ACEforce and the Q Point telematics system brought a great deal of value to the Vinci Construction site. The machines performed well, while the new technology enabled complete tracking of the work.
“The advantages of these machines with integrated full-area compaction documentation lie in their innovative technology,” explains Frédéric Hoeffel, Key Account Manager at Ammann. “The synergy of this technology and powerful ARS rollers permanently increases productivity.”
Combining the technologies brings impressive results. ACEforce with GPS greatly simplifies the identification of compacted areas. Monitoring of the compaction process is much easier, which also benefits machine drivers. Colour-coded drum passes are displayed directly on a screen. After reaching the desired values, the operator can move the machine to the next work area. This eliminates unnecessary passes, saves time and fuel and increases productivity. This system also allows complete GPS mapping of gathered information.
VINCI’s pursuit of the work included its utilisation of the innovative ARS technologies and the low-cost compaction system with documentation. It is possible to record all relevant values, such as the number of passes, machine position, travel speed and rigidity values of the compacted area – regardless of whether a smooth or padfoot drum is used.
Data displayed on the screen can be transmitted in real time to the central computer. The site manager can then supervise and document the entire compaction process. In addition, the supervisor can provide the driver with information on the bearing capacity of the terrain or give direct instructions to make the compaction process more efficient. All collected data can be used for daily or periodic evaluation. The data can be further used as needed – for example, in work reports or as supporting documents for the client.
“Machines have reached the plug-and-play stage,” explains Kuno Kaufmann, Head of Digital Products at Q Point. “The entire innovative system was designed so that the driver only attaches the hardware to the machine and connects it. The system then automatically activates the stored machine data during the first installation. The team on site does not have to perform any further configuration and can go straight to work. Control and configuration errors are impossible.”
From the moment the machines were delivered, VINCI Construction Terrassement teams – under the watchful eye of Deutsche Bahn – could start working on a real test field.
At the beginning of the work, Deutsche Bahn established and marked the test field. Soil samples were taken from the test field and analysed. A formula was determined based on the soil analysis. This dictated what binder to use – and at what ratio to deliver the required rigidity.
The test field was evenly covered with the binder, which was then mixed with the adjacent soil by milling. This resulted in a flat surface.
This processed soil was then compacted using the ARS 220 with a padfoot shell. It worked in high amplitude at a speed of 2-2.5 km/h. The driver could monitor the increase in rigidity by using the ACEforce Intelligent Compaction system, located directly on the display.
The display also shows the roller paths. These paths and the displayed values are transmitted in real time to the stationary computer of the subsidiary of VINCI Construction Terrassement. This procedure quickly ensured a homogeneous bearing capacity of the entire test area that met the requirements of Deutsche Bahn. At the end, the surface was processed by a grader and compacted by an Ammann ARS 200 with a smooth drum. To ensure high quality, soil samples were once again taken and analysed in a laboratory.
Deutsche Bahn this year launched a number of projects to upgrade and modernise the Stuttgart railway junction. This particular section is just a single component in one of the largest projects in Germany. The construction will also contribute to creating the preconditions for the future high-speed line “Magistrale Européenne,” which will connect Paris with Budapest.