Approximately 242,000 hectares of the 7,400 total square kilometres of South Tyrol are used as farmland. Especially wine is thereby often cultivated on steep slopes with a narrow terrace arrangement which makes the cultivation rather difficult. Together with the company W.M.GmbH, Fraunhofer Italia developed an innovative tractor for viticulture.
This project was focused on the integration of active safety systems into the vehicle in order to improve the stability of the tractor, which should be small, lightweight, agile and multifunctional. A selective waist lock stabilizes the small tractor and a system installed on all four wheels detects whether a wheel has reduced ground contact. If this is the case, the torsion hinge is hydraulically locked in one direction. The lock is released by counter steering and the full off-road capability is given again. In addition, the slope stability was analysed by a multi-body simulation in order to guarantee an optimum weight distribution at any time and the load on the roll bar of the small tractor was simulated as part of the safety concept. The final approval was done in collaboration with the Department for Agricultural Engineering of the University of Bolzano.
Term: 2011 - 2012
Project partner: W.M. GmbH Blumau, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano