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The S.KI safety trailer offers greater driver comfort and trailer safety combined with environmentally conscious transport

Horstmar, September 2014 – At the IAA Show 2014 the focus is once again on tipper semi-trailer operating safety. Serious accidents repeatedly occur through the use of tippers and rear tipping semi-trailers, in particular, and these accidents often result in personal injury or extensive material damage. When developing the new, light-weight S.KI LIGHT tipper semi-trailer with a rounded steel body, new and innovative safety techniques for the driver, the trailer and other road users have been integrated. At the same time, a major emphasis was placed on achieving a low unladen weight in combination with a durable construction in order to provide optimal efficiency and environmentally-conscious operation through high payloads along with low maintenance and repair costs.

In recent years Schmitz Cargobull has continuously expanded its tipper semi-trailer product range and market share. This success is due to the broad spectrum of models. Customers have access to tailored, safe, functional and economic transport solutions.  

Greater vehicle safety when loading and unloading:

  • A chassis with an optimally drawn-in semi-trailer section was developed using finite element methods (FEM) in order to create a trailer with optimal stability. Tipping trials carried out on the in-house tipping test rig accompanied the development and verified the payload-optimised and extremely stable design when tipping.
  • Tractor units parked at an angle to the trailer are often the reason why semi-trailers tip over. A new application issues an alarm signal at the beginning of the tipping process if the vehicle is parked in this unfavourable position. Another application measures the vehicle's tilt angle and also triggers an alarm if the vehicle exceeds a defined tilt angle. This is available for mobile devices (smartphones or tablet PCs) and can serve to prevent the vehicle from tipping rolling over in critical situations.
  • The air pressure of the trailer's suspension system has also been integrated into the tipping process safety measures. An optional tyre re-pressurisation system serves to compensate for uneven pressure or restore inadequate tyre pressures. The correct air pressure for tipping and driving is configured by the system and increases the potential safety. This data can also be accessed via an app, so that the driver and the transport company have access to a comprehensive range of information.

Safety and comfort for the driver:

  • To simplify starting or to prevent 4x2 tractor units, in particular, from becoming stuck when working on construction sites, the vehicle can also be equipped with fully automatic traction support. A new system identifies traction problems and improves the traction by activating the lift axle or emptying the air bellows on the first axle.
  • The tipper semi-trailer can also be equipped with an optional electrical roller tarpaulin along with cargo area monitoring. An app is also available which displays the status of and operates the roller tarpaulin. This reduces the risk of accident for the driver as this system means that it is no longer necessary to climb up onto the semi-trailer to open and close the tarpaulin. The driver can comfortably monitor the loading process from the vehicle's cabin via camera.
  • An additional reversing camera monitors the area behind the vehicle when tipping or reversing, providing protection against ramming damage. This system also avoids the risk to people behind the vehicle who are not visible in the side mirrors (displayed via smartphone app).
  • A remote-controlled, folding underride guard serves to prevent injuries caused by manually folding or extending the underride guards underneath the rear of the semi-trailer. Thanks to this remote-controlled underride guard, the driver needs to climb in and out of the vehicle's cab less frequently. The system can also be operated and displayed using a smartphone app.
  • An additional monitoring function is also available: If the body is not completely lowered after tipping, this may cause collisions and extensive damage to underpasses, bridges, etc. In order to prevent this, the app function warns the driver if he/she is moving with an elevated trough after travelling only a few metres. In addition, a maximum total height can also be programmed for the vehicle. This, in turn, limits the tipping angle of the trough.

Economy and ecology in harmony:

  • The welded, light-weight steel chassis and the rounded steel body have been optimised for weight and payload using FEM. A steel construction is more robust in comparison to aluminium and thus offers greater sustainability and economy with regard to resource usage. Furthermore, at the same weight as an aluminium chassis, the steel chassis offers significantly better stability when tipping and is also easier to repair.
  • An integrated weighing system opens up a new range of opportunities. Upon arriving at the destination, the driver can print the delivery note for the customer and compare the weights before and after unloading. The load weight measured can be provided via dataset and utilised for a digital delivery note and weighing certificate. Data transfer points enable the print function along with additional data transfer options. This function is also available via an app.
  • Tyre pressure monitoring combined with a re-inflation function (see above) to consistently ensure the correct tyre pressure is a major economic and ecological factor when operating the vehicle. The correct tyre pressure not only reduces the risk of the trailer tipping over but also reduces fuel consumption when travelling and increases the service life of the tyres.
  • The electric roll-up tarpaulin reduces fuel consumption while travelling when closed by up to 12% in comparison to driving with an open tarpaulin. With the new electrical roll-up tarpaulin, the trough remains completely accessible for loading in contrast to
  • sliding tarpaulins without a canopy. The tarpaulin is located in a protected position on the side opposite to loading. A canopy is no longer necessary and there are no cables or other easily damaged components on the loading side. Functional reliability over thousands of opening and closing procedures has been proven through comprehensive test rig trials and practical tests. In addition, the remote control app also reduces the handling time and enables monitoring of safe transport. A major emphasis was placed on work safety. The system can be operated from the ground, minimising accidents resulting from frequently climbing onto or off the work platform.
  • Schmitz Cargobull has developed a new hydraulically operated tailgate with an integrated pendulum function which can be remotely controlled using a smartphone app. It is an outstanding feature for difficult bulk goods and also represents the perfect choice for use when working with road finishers and for road construction when used in combination with metering equipment. This variant can be opened and closed extremely quickly.
  • i-Level is the new, electronically controlled pneumatic suspension and provides drivers and transport companies with extensive advantages over purely pneumatic systems The remote control app is an important feature for drivers, enabling complete control via smartphone. In addition, i-Level also possesses a memory function which allows a variety of different unloading levels to be programmed. This saves time when unloading and also ensures that the correct unloading height is set. As such, drivers can now pre-set the pneumatic suspension level when working with road finishers. Furthermore, larger valve cross-sections also guarantee more rapid lifting and lowering.

Schmitz Cargobull places a major emphasis on quality and long service life. That is why all of the tipper semi-trailer models are subjected to extensive stress tests and endurance tests at the company's own in-house Schmitz Cargobull Validation Centre. Furthermore, Schmitz Cargobull also examines and tests the tipping stability of every vehicle trailer using its own specially developed testing rig. That is why customers can trust that they will receive top quality and technically sophisticated trailers which provide optimal fleet uptime.

The same claim also applies to the service sector. Schmitz Cargobull possesses one of the most extensive service networks with 24/7/365 availability. This ensures that customers receive reliable spare parts supply on location and qualified support for their trailers and rigid bodies from highly capable workshops.