Usually when we think of ski resorts ‘going green’ it is in relation to melting snow during the spring season. But going green for the world’s biggest groomer manufacturer, Kässbohrer, is the first electric piste basher.
Revealed at the Interalpin Trade Show in Innsbruck, the PistenBully 100E isn’t on sale just yet but Kässbohrer states that it has been tested on pistes and the initial results have been good. This is a major step forward in making ski resorts completely green powdered as between 10,000 to 20,000 piste bashers work on slopes across the world each evening throughout the season and up until now, they have ran on diesel. It follows the success of the 600E+ which launched in 2012 as the first diesel-electric piste basher.
The PistenBully 100E, gearjunkie.com
Not only is the maximum efficiency of the PistenBully 100E environmental, but economic efficiency is imperative also as the operating costs are high. Kässbohrer has introduced satellite technology which allows operations to track snow depth, move snow efficiently whilst at the same time make perfect laps as to not waste fuel.
The energy capacity of the batteries is 126kWh with 400V rated voltage. Within 5 hours, 75% of the piste basher can be charged, whilst full charge takes 6.5 hours. At the moment full charge enables an average of 2.5 to 3 hours driving time. Although it is not enough for a full nights shift, there are plans for a model advance in order to increase the battery capacity.
A company spokesperson has stated “an extensive number of tests have been carried out during the study, because only well-engineered technology meets the high-qaulity demands of Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug AG. Highly promising prospects!”