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Innovation Awards presented at bauma 2013

Innovation Awards presented at bauma 2013

Every three years at the bauma trade show in Munich, Germany, the German construction industry honours forward-looking developments with regard to construction equipment, building material and mining machinery, as well as buildings/ construction processes with innovation awards

The six winning innovations substantially fulfill the criteria which the jury uses to make their selections: holding great promise for the future; practicality of application; contribution to environmental protection and to humanization of the workplace; and energy- and cost-efficiency coupled with performance.

Wirtgen wins Machinery Components award with their AutoPilot Field Rover
With its "AutoPilot Field Rover" Wirtgen has succeeded in developing a component that, in comparison to the systems used so far, accelerates the processes in road construction, saves costs and delivers higher quality. Paving is much quicker because no digital terrain models are needed for the manufacture of monolithic profiles such as curbs or concrete safety barriers, and no stringlines need to be secured in the ground. The Wirtgen AutoPilot Field Rover can be operated by any machine operator, not just personnel trained in surveying. This saves time and costs. The system bases its calculations on the actual job site measurements and does not rely on site drawings, the latter often leading to inaccuracies that then need to be corrected, which of course incurs further cost and man-hours. As such the AutoPilot Field Rover achieves greater precision in paving. In addition, the slipform paver can automatically negotiate obstacles, thereby enhancing safety on the site and reducing the risk of machine damage to a minimum.

New method of installing pipelines wins the Machinery award
For the last five years Herrenknecht has been working on the development of a new method of installing pipelines. Fast, environmentally friendly and economical – all these criteria are met by "Pipe Express". Like a tireless mole the steel milling unit eats its way forward at almost one meter per minute underground. Pipe Express is an innovation that will revolutionize the laying of pipes and cables in the ground. Until now the job of laying pipes has involved leaving scars in the landscape of up to 50 meters wide. The new process minimizes the intervention to a width of nine meters and it even works well in ground with water-bearing strata. In comparison to conventional open-construction methods, the Pipe Express considerably reduces the impact on the environment and at the same time minimizes the costs of the building site.

Two innovations tie for Construction Process/Construction Work award
Two winners were announced in this category, because the jury considered both entries were of equal merit.

Bauer Spezialtiefbau GmbH receives its award for its project for a "monopile foundation for a tidal engine turbine". A number of companies in the Bauer Group were involved in developing this brand new concept for underwater drilling. This new process makes it possible to securely drill monopiles for tidal turbines into the seabed, even into the hardest rock, in situations where jack-up platforms and drill ships cannot be used because of the depth of the water or strong currents. The technique was first successfully applied off the coast of Scotland. The company has thus demonstrated that it is economically viable to install monopile foundations with an undersea drill and at the same time created a basis for a further breakthrough in the use of tidal turbines, as part of the shift towards renewable energy.

The second award-winner in this category is Max Bögl Bauunternehmung for its project for hybrid-energy wind towers constructed with revolving tower cranes, which also makes a significant contribution to the further expansion in the use of renewable energy and to protecting the environment. With this process, which Bögl developed in cooperation with the building machinery manufacturer Liebherr, wind towers with hub heights of up to 150 meters can not only be erected fast, they can also be dismantled fast – and all at wind speeds of up to 20 m/s and with a much minimized intervention into the environment. Heavy crawler cranes are no longer needed. The work is done by a self-climbing revolving tower crane. In comparison to conventional methods, the space needed is reduced by almost a third. The revolving tower crane can be transported by normal HGVs, so no special heavy transports are needed.

Research award presented for sand and gravel development
The Mining Institute at the Technical University of Clausthal has succeeded in developing a robust and practical system for determining the distribution of particles in granular materials, for example sand and gravel. This obviates the need for time-consuming and costly sampling from the process cycle and laboratory analysis. Once calibrated and integrated into the installation, the Online Grain Size Analyzer is capable of analyzing the grain size distribution in all bulk flows, in real time, whatever the grain size and the type of mixing. It even enables a full system analysis. That saves time and costs. It also identifies immediately any weaknesses in the manufacturing process, so that they can be corrected rapidly. In addition, the system ensures continuously optimum product quality. Also improved is safety at work. As it is no longer necessary to sample during ongoing operation, the risk of accidents is banished. This means no more health risks to operators, such as can easily arise in laboratories through the formation of dust from sifting products with quartz content.

Kaiser’s Walking Mobile Excavator 2013 takes the Design award
Kaiser AG’s new Walking Mobile Excavator 2013, developed in cooperation with the firm "Design Department" of Linz, is a successful blend of optimum function and optimum design. And that’s not an easy thing to do with a machine that climbs spider-like up and down slopes on four legs. In a report published at the end of the 1960s in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, the walking mobile excavator was described as follows: "It’s a digging machine with spider’s legs and all the charm of an illuminated telephone box." Well that image has now changed. The cab of Kaiser’s walking mobile excavator blends harmoniously with the superstructure. And, together with the base, these unite to form a successful overall design. The dynamics of the machine itself are underlined by the broad vents on the side of the superstructure. The design of the operator’s cab is also exemplary. It offers the driver all that he needs for shifts that can last many hours: optimum safety, ergonomics and user-friendliness.