3D Machine Control Systems

Sensors for NIVELTRONIC Plus®, the VÖGELE System for Automated Grade and Slope Control.

The use of 3D machine control systems in earth moving is already common practice, but now road pavers are also being increasingly equipped with this technology, especially on major job sites. Therefore, the final part of the articles on “Sensors for NIVELTRONIC Plus®, the VÖGELE System for Automated Grade and Slope Control” covers the VÖGELE 3D control systems NAVITRONIC Plus® and NAVITRONIC® Basic. The latter is the new version for wheeled machines.

In major road construction projects and projects involving the surfacing of large areas, paving must be carried out with utmost precision. In the past, tensioned wires used to be installed. These served as a reference for grade and slope control. However, tensioning reference wires is a very laborious task which runs up the costs for every new project. NAVITRONIC®, the System for 3D Machine Control, always operates with a virtual reference, allowing this time-consuming work to be dispensed with during job site preparation. Consequently, the overall investment is paid off very quickly.

Innovative 3D control system for tracked pavers: NAVITRONIC Plus®

With NAVITRONIC Plus®, VÖGELE offer a 3D control system without tensioned wires that not only handles the grade and slope control, but also controls the screed’s position and the paver’s direction of travel fully automatically and very precisely – making this system a unique contender on the market.

For wheeled machines: NAVITRONIC® Basic

A version of the NAVITRONIC® system for wheeled machines is a completely new solution from VÖGELE. Called NAVITRONIC® Basic, this 3D machine control system features the same performance characteristics as NAVITRONIC Plus® for tracked machines with just one exception: in contrast to tracked pavers, wheeled pavers can be steered far more precisely manually than with an electronic control system. This is why the operator controls the paver’s direction of travel by hand in the case of NAVITRONIC® Basic. The operator is shown the specified route and the paver’s position on the display of the 3D machine control system, thus being able to steer the machine very precisely, all without an artificial reference.

Different positioning systems are compatible

The central component of a 3D control system, i.e. the digital positioning system, is connected to NAVITRONIC Plus® or NAVITRONIC® Basic via an open interface, the so-called “open port”. Thanks to this interface, different systems from numerous manufacturers can be selected. These may be optical systems with a laser-based total station and prism (such as PaveSmart 3D from Leica), or satellite-supported systems with a GPS receiver in combination with a laser receiver (for example, mmGPS from Topcon).

For Tracked Pavers: NAVITRONIC Plus®

For Wheeled Pavers: NAVITRONIC® Basic

Saving costs with NAVITRONIC Plus® and NAVITRONIC® Basic

The “open port” represents an important economic advantage of NAVITRONIC Plus® and NAVITRONIC® Basic, as 3D positioning systems that are already in use with a contractor’s other machines can also be used for the road paver. The additional investment in 3D control for asphalt paving is thus significantly lower. And there’s another important cost saving factor: the possibility of using existing survey data – such as that collected for earth moving work – for road construction, too, slashes the overall costs for survey work. In particular, dispensing with the time-consuming survey work also allows large areas to be paved considerably faster with the VÖGELE NAVITRONIC® system, which in turn reduces the costs for the customer.

Patented automatic control of the paver’s direction of travel with NAVITRONIC Plus®

The NAVITRONIC Plus® version for tracked machines controls the steering of the paver directly via the machine control system. This means that a road paver whose current position is continuously picked up via laser-based total station or GPS is guided along the planned route fully automatically. The paving team can check the paver’s position and any deviations from the specified line on the display of the 3D control system. The 3D machine control system is a registered patent of JOSEPH VÖGELE AG.

Selection: The Optimal Sensor for Every Paving Application