(Sweden/UK) — Say ‘DISAB’ to the UK’s major plant contractors and they’ll tell you it’s the world’s most powerful vacloader, a Swedish designed and built HGV-mounted marvel that makes remarkably short work of all vacuuming up wet and dry waste and spillage material.
The DISAB Group’s LN200 series vacloaders use their uniquely powerful combination of a 9 litre Caterpillar donkey engine to drive a Kaeser Omega 83 PV pump via a single Roots blower. Generating 8,000 to 9,500 cubic metres of air volume, a DISAB LN200 Vacloader will suck a large skip full of tennis-to-golf ball sized aggregate – wet or dry, it doesn’t matter – into its capacious 12,000 litre tank in about 10 minutes, and if you want, blow it all back again. Or do all this from 300-400 feet away, or up if you want.
Water, sand, shot, mud, sludge, cake, slabs of slag – the DISAB vacloader will gobble up tonnes of it in less time than anything else can, and shift it all to wherever it is needed. That’s why plant managers in the cement and concrete, steel making, water treatment, mining, quarrying, aggregates, and other process industries that generate dust, waste and spillage material, ask for a DISAB.
Now hold that idea for a minute and let’s check out a typical railway maintenance gang digging out all the ballast and sub-soil from part of the UK’s tens of thousands of miles of track bed. Almost any track maintenance task anywhere requires chaps to dig, and to make matters worse underneath those hand- or maybe hydraulically-powered shovels is valuable cabling, drainage and other vital infrastructure. To make matters worse, track possession time is probably little more than 3 hours at night. Now you’ll understand why track maintenance is such a big issue in the UK, and takes so long to get to completion.
In Sweden they don’t do rail track maintenance and repairs like this any more. They just call in a DISAB vacloader to do the job, but not just any DISAB vacloader. The RailVac is effectively a DISAB Centurion vacloader on a railwagon, but courtesy of a second Roots blower as well, this one is actually twice as powerful. That means all the heavy ballast and sub-soil used for the UK’s rail track beds can now be removed in the fastest time possible with minimal labour and no risk of damaging existing infrastructure.
Using a boom-mounted 8 inch suction hose and DISAB’s equivalent of a Playstation console, one chap can provide the equivalent of turbo-charged keyhole excavation for any trackbed requirement: power transmission, telecommunications, cabling, track repairs, etc. As trackbed excavation in the UK is normally done by hand, the RailVac is positively revolutionary. It’s certainly far more efficient and much more cost-effective – exactly what Network Rail and all its contractors need for 21st century rail maintenance and renewal. Watch the RailVac at work on http://en.railcare.se/export
Eric Hardegard, CEO of the DISAB Group, is delighted with the arrival of the UK’s new RailVac: “The innovative vacuum excavation technique is well proven by the Scandinavian railway maintenance industry, and is attracting a lot of attention from the UK railway maintenance companies and engineers. We are simply using the same technology we build into our uniquely powerful mobile vacloaders, the DISAB Centurion LN200s, but by doubling up the Roots blowers we have achieved an extraordinary increase in the RailVac’s suction power – ideal for helping the UK rail industry achieve far more efficient rail maintenance and renewal.”
The new Railvac has already made a big impact at its first UK demonstration at Wirksworth, Derbyshire in March, as Railcare Business Manager Hkan Johansson can confirm: “The new RailVac RA7 made a huge impression on the 70 railway engineers who came. The sheer speed with which it excavates heavy ballast, digs trenches, cleans out drainage culverts etc. puts the new RailVac and its vacuum excavation technique in a completely different league to existing railway excavation approaches. As one engineer described it, the new RailVac is the best invention he’d seen in 25 years and represents a huge step forward for railway maintenance in the UK.”