Most of the Indian roads in both, rural area or urban area are of very bad quality. Lets’ take a look at what it takes to make quality roads.
The task of building a road is a very difficult one. It can be a very easy to fake roads for toy cars, but the case is not the same when it comes to building roads for real vehicles. Even if rocks and shovels are often involved in the making of roads, it takes a few people and a lot of special equipment to build a real road.
The first step in building a road is planning. Many people, including engineers and construction experts, must be involved in figuring out what type of road should be made — and what it should be made from — depending upon the amount and type of traffic it will likely see.
Designed for better roads5
“To make a high quality road, contractors need equipment that will deliver speed, consistency and reliability. Volvo CE is one of the leading suppliers of road building equipment in India and over the past 12 months the company has introduced three new machines for this sector, supporting the ambitious road-building program being driven by the Indian government,” says Dimitrov Krishnan, Vice President and head of Volvo CE India.
Volvo has come up with Volvo DD90B, a unique compactor. Throwing light on the compactor, Krishnan says, “The Volvo DD90B is built in India and powered by an engine which adheres to the country’s Bharat Stage-III (CEV) emissions regulations. This compactor is engineered to deliver the compaction performance necessary to accommodate the heavy volumes of traffic that the sub-continent’s roads often carry.”
He further adds, “Built for power and efficiency, the Volvo DD90B combines high centrifugal force, heavy drum weight and variable amplitude to produce the energy necessary for excellent compaction. With the choice of dual amplitudes and frequencies, the 9-ton double drum asphalt compactor delivers a smooth, finished mat in fewer passes for optimum productivity and profitability.”
The drums are precisely machined to full-width concentricity, while the drums’ profile reduces edge marks as well as the need for finish-rolling operations. This in a way prevents pavement surface flaws. Smart Vibration, also prevents surface damage to ensure a flawless finish. Utilising dual frequencies and dual amplitudes, performance can be matched to a wider variety of applications for increased productivity.
The updated SD110BA single-drum compactor from Volvo CE is designed with productivity in mind, combining powerful performance, quality compaction and versatility to adapt to earthwork compaction applications in India.
Sharing the details of the single drum compactor, Krishnan says, “The 11-tonne class SD110BA combines dynamic drum forces and a heavy drum weight to produce the energy necessary to achieve material target density in fewer passes. With the highest centrifugal force in its class, the SD110BA delivers unmatched performance, ease of operation and outstanding output.”
In addition, the Volvo SD110BA is designed to achieve high quality compaction and a flawless mat finish. Utilising infinite frequency choices and dual amplitudes, the versatile machine gives operators the flexibility to modify the drum’s dynamic force according to material depth and type. With a switch, the operator can easily adjust the amplitude from the operator console to adapt to varying layer thickness, ensuring precise compaction.
As per the company claims, Volvo SD110BA not only increases output levels, it also enables operators to access hard-to-reach areas of the jobsite thanks to the fully integrated traction control system. Preventing wheel slip provides stability when operating on steep inclines and slippery surfaces.
Apart from the manufacturing of compactors for the road construction industry, Volvo has also come up with the pavers to achieve optimal power, efficiency and quality in medium and large-scale projects where paving widths range from 2.5 to 7 m. “The best-in-class power of the 88 kW (118 hp) D5 engine is capable of pushing 25-ton trucks and pulls the Volvo screed with ease, even at maximum paving width,” concludes Krishnan.
Technology is here
Earthmoving and construction equipment manufacturer JCB India is transforming into a full range infrastructure equipment partner in India. Commenting on what it takes to make quality roads, Jasmeet Singh, Head – Corporate Communications and External Relations, JCB India Ltd said, “Roads and highways play an important part in the overall development of the economy. Equipment plays a very critical role in making quality road. The road making technology is fast evolving in India and state-of-the-art technology is widely available in the market today. The primary concept of any road building is designed keeping the traffic density and longevity in focus.”
JCB India offers three world-class road compaction equipment namely – the 10-tonne class solid compactor VM116, VMT860 asphalt tandem roller and the smaller VMT 330 tandem roller. These machines are manufactured at the state-of-the-art facility in Pune and are also exported to various countries around the globe.
JCB offers complete compaction measurement system to the end user which includes first level solution such as a simple compaction meter which can be retrofitted on any of its compactors. In addition, JCB also offers advanced measurement systems which includes GPS monitoring of the machine, no. of compaction passes, relative density, measure of fuel levels, and temperature sensing in case of tandem rollers etc.
Unlocking the potential of telematics
“At JCB, we have integrated the Internet of Things within our earthmoving and construction equipment range through an advanced telematic technology called, Livelink,” said Jasmeet. He further adds, “We innovated and introduced Livelink which is an advanced machine monitoring system that not only gives users the location of their equipment at all times, but also relays back all machine related information which can be accessed by customers, dealers and JCB.”
The Livelink strives to deliver constructive, real-time information to increase profits and improve productivity. Both, the equipment owners and operators can access information such as fuel consumption, ideal time, machine location, fluid levels and service alerts on their mobile devices or laptops using the internet.
“Our objective is to ensure that a machine is always healthy and gives the highest level of performance,” Jasmeet further explained. The JCB Livelink system helps in informing users by SMS alerts, the location and condition of their JCB machines. Geo fencing and Time fencing features also give out SMS alerts whenever the machine moves out of the designated, pre-determined geographical areas. This feature also works when the machine is being operated beyond the time that the customer has preset.
With the growing labour costs and great difficulty in getting skilled labour throughout India, the Indian market has begun to consider investment in automation of pallet and product handling in their new concrete block plants. Vijay Kumbhani, Director, Columbia Machine Engineering (I) Pvt Ltd says, “The growing popularity of small concrete products such as pavers and flash bricks has led Columbia India‘s engineers to develop the next block machine with a pallet size optimised for these requirements. Columbia India now introduces SPM 30, this bigger and better block machine with fully automated pallet handling and cubing system is now manufactured in India and is the most reliable and viable alternative on the market.”
Pallet Size for Indian Market
Pallet size of 750mmx600mm especially designed taking care of Indian Market conditions. Steel pallets provide 50 per cent more product cycle than SPM20.
Loader/ Unloader: Precision design and engineered, Rack Loader/Unloader provides most advanced, safest and flexible means for moving green and cured products within your plant.”
Automatic Cubing: Cured products are automatically cubed on wooden pallets using Plate Style Cuber PSC200, US technology made in India.
Zero Downtime: The rugged design and automatic vibrator lubrication reduces maintenance requirements providing significantly increased up time and higher productivity.
“SPM30 provides the Indian customer with the next generation of concrete block Plant made in India at an affordable price and gives a quick return on investment,” Kumbhani says.
1107EX soil compactor by CASE
“CASE India offers the most advanced technological products which are suited to the basic Indian requirements of high fuel efficiency and productivity. The company emphasises on continuous product development to improve the equipment performance, operator comfort, boost productivity and increase fuel-efficiency,” says Shalabh Chaturvedi, Head of Marketing, CASE India.
The company has recently upgraded CASE 1107EX soil compactor that ensures powerful, fuel-efficient performance. Chaturvedi further adds, “The turbo after cooled engine with internal Exhaust Gas Recirculation ensures best-in-class fuel economy. The more than 2 million S8000 engines at work across the world are testament to the reliability of this proven power plant. The maximum applied force in the range of 34 tonnes is among the best in the industry. The hydrostatic variable speed control ensures the CASE 1107EX travels at the perfect speed for every type of soil, resulting in a uniform compaction.”
The CASE 1107EX is also available with advanced features such as the compaction meter and Eagle Eye Telematic System, a real time vehicle tracking and communication based on GPS technology that helps deliver better value for money. In addition to this, Intelligent Compaction System (ICS) is one of the recent technological innovations with several advantages over conventional compaction technologies. “However, it being still at a nascent stage suffers from lack of adequate knowledge among engineers and is costlier than conventional compactors. The equipment used in small scale projects are selected by contractors. Hence the recommendation and acceptance of intelligent compaction systems has to come from the contractor fraternity, who has to educate themselves and get to understand the advantages this technology offers,” comments Chaturvedi.
The company has recently launched new models of crawler dozers 1150L and 1650L ranging from 13 to 20 tonne of operating weight with ‘Hydrostatic Transmission’ technology, powered by a 6.7 litre 6 cylinder engine engineered by FPT Industrial. As per the company claims, this Tier III FPT industrial engine introduces new features and upgrades that raise the bar on performance, and deliver market leading fuel economy and power.
“CASE India has introduced globally followed ‘World Class Manufacturing’ processes at the Pithampur plant. Among the other initiatives in the same direction, the company has successfully lowered the sound levels in all the construction equipments enhancing operator comfort, which in turn increases productivity,” sums up Chaturvedi.
Though the quality of roads has improved over the last two years, there is a lot of science, planning and work that is required to have the best quality roads throughout the country.