AMS expands into pitch mowing

Natalie St Hillin Machinery & Mechanics

Automated Managed Services Ltd (AMS) is the UK's official distributors for Belrobotics robots and offers a contract based robotic maintenance service solution for turf care. With the aim of building on its undoubted success in the golf industry, AMS is kick-starting its expansion into sport pitch/field care with upcoming installations at Barking FC and Halesowen FC.

These football clubs will be home to the new BigMow Connected Line robotic mower, released into the UK market in April of this year it will be showcased at this years turf management show at the NEC. Its features include a large working area capacity of 24,000 m2, up from the 20,000m2 coverage offered by its predecessor the BigMow Classic. Design improvements to the shell/body design contribute to low noise level output of 52db. It has five sonars used to navigate its surroundings and to perform effective obstacle avoidance. A Belrobotics smartphone app has also been introduced to allow customers to programme mowing schedules and monitor performance.

With 45 plus robot locations across the UK, a single BigMow robotic mower can mow a pitch 5 to 7 times per week and imposes no stress to the grass due to its lightweight design. It has 15 razor sharp blades that trim the top of the grass into tiny clippings, which then decompose quickly acting as a natural fertiliser. This in turn reduces the need for chemical fertilisers and frees up personnel to focus on other aspects of pitch care. The BigMow's manicure style mulching also means there is no green waste to collect, store or remove.

Additionally, due to a regular mowing schedule, the grass roots grip is strengthen allowing better anchoring into the soil. Creating a denser sward that is better resistant to wear and tear. This means frequent traffic areas like goalmouths become more shear resistant due natural ample continuous grass growth. With the overall quality of the pitch becoming softer and more homogenous, results in a better ball flight, shot accuracy and playing experience for users.

AMS's automated maintenance service solution requires no capital outlay and is run on an affordable monthly service contract. Sport facilities with limited resources can also benefit due to the availability of turf care grants, meaning cash strapped facilities can also reap the benefits robotic mowing provides. A typical robot mower installation involves the install of a docking station and a perimeter wire. The docking station is where the robot goes to recharge and the perimeter wire emits a magnetic field acting as an underground boundary to guide the robot.

"We've had a lot of keen interest from grassroot sport facilities over the last few months, which have led to installations at Hitchin Town FC and Old Halesonians RFC. With several other installs already in the pipeline, the potential benefits of redeploying personnel to other tasks, operational cost savings, overall health benefits to turf and the availability of grants offered by the FA, ECB and the RFU, are just some of the reasons robotic mowing is fast becoming a desirable turf maintenance option" said Philip Sear, Managing Director of Automated Managed Services Ltd.

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