Royal Highland Show 2019: Machinery and technology innovation awarded
As this week’s Royal Highland Show gets into full swing, we take a look at the event’s Innovation Awards. A real highlight of the show, the awards recognise outstanding technical achievement in the field of agricultural machinery and technology.
This year, the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS) is to award one gold, six silver and four certificates of commendations for technical innovation. The awards will be presented on Saturday June 22 at the Royal Highland Show.
Gold awards are presented to previous silver award winners for continuous outstanding merit. Picking up this year’s only gold award is Kverneland for its clever 2500 i-plough. As IsoBus systems continue to develop, so to do the possibilities of how to control machinery. And the latest Kverneland 2500 series iPlough is no exception.
Available from four to six furrows, IsoBus control allows almost complete set-up of the plough from the tractor seat. In addition, its vari-width function can be automated via the use of GPS, essentially enabling the plough to steer itself to maintain a straight furrow.
The plough can be operated in four main modes; transport, work, park and mark. Switching between the modes sees the plough configure itself automatically, reducing time and increasing convenience, says the manufacturer.
As well as software, pretty much all of the plough is brand new, save for the mouldboard design. A new, rounded profile leg design helps with trash flow and reduces ware, while a new centralised skimmer adjustment system sees skimmer set-up time slashed in half.
Silver medal winners
- Tractor manufacturer Case IH gets a silver medal for its Maxxum 145 Multicontroller model. This is fitted with the firm’s new eight-speed powershift ActiveDrive 8 transmission, offering a total of 24 by 24 gears. At the heart of the new transmission is the use of double clutch technology, something which the firm has been using on its CVX machines to change range for many years. With one clutch looking after the odd numbered gears on one shaft and one clutch looking after the even numbered gears on another shaft, the clutches allow quick shifting of gears from one shaft to the other, says the manufacturer. Benefits of which are said to be greater gear overlap, smoother and faster shifting with little torque interruption and increased flexibility of use.
- Canadian firm Can-Am receives a silver medal for its anti-lock braking (ABS) system for ATVs. The system features a specially calibrated control unit, which analyses brake lever pressure and individual wheel speeds to apply the correct amount of braking force, says the manufacturer.
- Oran Oak Engineering, from Northern Ireland, picks up a silver for its DipFast enclosed sheep showering unit. Mark Kelly and his three sons developed the system on their own farm. It allows for one-person operation and there is minimal contact with the sheep and the dip.
- Easyfix, from Galway in Ireland is awarded silver for its Easyfix Evolve animal feeding system. Aiming to improve cow welfare and performance, the system features a unique design allowing for maximum feed intake for cows, and both safe access and egress for farm workers. It allows for essential head movements in cattle eliminating injuries and marks associated with steel barriers.
- Penderfeed Livestock Equipment, from Duns in the Scottish Borders gains a silver for its Arrowquip Q-Catch. This cattle crush is claimed to be the quietest available thanks to the use of nylon bushes on the hinges and rubber access panel slam bolts. The heavy-duty rubber floor provides complete silence and sure footing for cattle, says the manufacturer.
- Pollock Farm Equipment in Cumnock, Ayrshire, receives a silver for its Pollock Rope Scraper System. Housed within a fully galvanised frame, the drive system uses a hollow shaft gearbox fitted with a torque spring to dampen shock loading and a micro-switch to back up the system’s in-built animal overload safety sensor.
Certificates of commendation
- Hampton Steel, from Northamptonshire, is awarded a certificate for its Versalok metal post and clip fencing system. It provides a long-term solution for farmers and fencing contractors looking to replace their timber posts with a versatile metal alternative, says the company.
- PEL Waste Reduction Equipment, County Mayo, Ireland is awarded a certificate for its PEL balers. The balers reduce the volume of waste by 80 per cent, reducing the haulage costs and storage space required for bales.
- Ferris Industries, New York, receives a certificate for its Ferris ISX 800 zero-turn mower. Featuring new double-wishbone suspension, the ISX 800 uses four control rods on the front caster wheels resulting in a smoother, more comfortable ride, precise terrain following and an improved cut, says the manufacturer.
- Water Fuel Engineering, South Yorkshire, gets a certificate for its HydroGen autonomous electrolyser. It reduces emissions and fuel consumption through introducing oxyhydrogen gas (HHO) to conventional vehicles by accelerating the burning process in engines.