Ransomes Jacobsen, the Ipswich-based turf maintenance equipment manufacturer, has supplied one of their newest state-of-the-art walk-behind mowers for an unusual application - mowing an extensive area of natural grass lawn on Celebrity Cruise Lines latest cruise ship, the Celebrity Solstice.
The 122,000 tonne luxurious cruise liner was built at the Meyer Werft yard in Papenburg, Germany and its maiden voyage was in November last year. One of its many amenities is The Lawn Club, an innovative new country club environment featuring a 2,130 square metre natural lawn situated between the ship's funnels on the upper deck. Guests can play bowls and croquet, practice their putting, picnic with a basket of wine and cheese, or simply feel the grass between their toes, while sailing the oceans of the world.
Celebrity Cruise Lines specification for a mower demanded that the machine would produce minimal noise, so that it would not disturb guests relaxing in the area. Their facilities management company, Green Roof Services, then had to source an appropriate mower and contacted The Turf Care Co (TTC), Ransomes Jacobsen's distributor in Germany.
TTC had just the mower to provide the ideal solution; the Jacobsen Eclipse 122F which features electric drive to the traction cylinder and the cutting unit, but with a choice power units, - a 4.6hp Honda petrol engine powering a 48-volt genset or a 48-volt drop-in battery pack. Green Roof Services selected the drop-in battery option, giving the on-board greenkeeper the perfect solution to his mowing requirements.
For the technically minded, a special porous lightweight growing medium is used instead of soil. It consists of 90mm of heat expanded calcium clay, crushed to provide an open structure and blended with sieved and washed volcanic pumice. A Polypropylene Geo grid is added to stabilize layers and withstand foot traffic.