Preparing for a Demonstration of the Rosmech R6 Regenerative Air Sweeper

by Ranger Kidwell-Ross, Editor of and Executive Director of the World Sweeping Association.

Something I had been anticipating since being introduced to the new Rosmech R6 at Civenex was seeing it in action. In Adelaide, I was afforded that opportunity.

PlaneTrees300Malcolm and I were instructed to meet Colin Miller and the R6 at an area of Adelaide where Rosmech personnel had pre-scouted to be one with a significant leaf fall on the street. Further, this area was one that had been planted with the notoriously difficult to pick up leaves of the London Plane Tree. These trees, which have a leaf similar to that of the maple leaves found in the U.S., are in widespread use as street trees in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney, Australia.

PlaneTreeAnimationPicking up the leaves creates an added difficulty for sweepers because of the seed pods that cover the trees.  The pods are quite hard and, when autumn comes and the pods fall to the ground and dry out, they become crushed by traffic. That creates a unique sort of feathery material that tend to cover the screens of air sweepers quickly and relentlessly. The tree also produces a large leaf that, when wet, sticks to the ground and, due to that, increases the difficulty in pickup, as well. You can see illustrations of these different concepts by watching through the 20-second animation to the left.

In order to provide some background of this type of sweeping, and the unique challenges faced by sweeping contractors in places where the London Plane Tree is found, Malcolm Cameron participated in two videos that better explain the concept in full. These are shown below. Then, our next installment will include the demonstration of the Rosmech R6 in sweeping this neighborhood.

Besides having been involved in international sweeper sales for decades, Malcolm Cameron is pretty much an expert on plants. At one point he ran a substantial landscaping company that was mostly involved in the restoration of old gardens. He has also been, for a number of years, the Chairman of the Parks & Gardens Committee for the City of Melbourne, Australia, and was Head Gardener at a the Como House National Trust Property in Melbourne. (Plus, he grows his own vegetables today!)

In the following brief video Malcolm discusses the difficulty in picking up London Plane Tree leaves and other detritus.

In the following video Malcolm talks about how London Plane (and similar) trees are ‘pollarded’ in city settings in order to accommodate electric wires without causing fires due to the rubbing of wire against branches. According to Wikipedia, Pollarding is a pruning system in which the upper branches of a tree are removed, promoting a dense head of foliage and branches. Pollarding in Ancient Rome was mentioned by Propertius during the 1st Century BC.[1] It has been common in Europe since medieval times and is practiced today in urban areas worldwide, primarily to maintain trees at a predetermined height.[2]

Now that you know the setting and the difficulties, we’ll move on to the actual demonstration of the Rosmech R6 regenerative air sweeper as it addresses the challenge.