Winter Service Vehicles: Liquefy Your Snow Problems Away With a Snow Melter!May 26, 2021
Now that the winter season is upon us, safe driving is also starting to become a bit of a challenging task to accomplish. Snowstorms that are moving across the country are depositing huge quantities of the wintry precipitation on the roads and road crews work around-the-clock trying to clear the streets and highways for safe travel. With each additional winter storm, huge mounds of snow build up until it seems as if there is no additional place to put more of this wintry commodity. What comes to the rescue? Thank goodness there is a winter service vehicle known as a snow melter!
A Different Approach to the Problem
This is truly a unique winter service vehicle and it is not just due to its large size and the way it removes snow off our roads. As opposed to the machines that simply move the problem to another location; the snow melter takes a completely different approach wholesale pipes. It alters this frozen state of water back into its liquid state (water!) and flushes the problem away!
How does it Work?
So how does this wonderful machine work? It is equipped with a melting pit or tank located at the rear end of the vehicle. An attached burner system forces heated air down a cylinder that is submerged in water. The two things mix together and travel up another tube where the warm water is then sprayed over the incoming snow to further advance the melting process. As the level of the water increases during the melting process, it overflows into a drain pipe, passes through filters to remove any large debris and is then deposited in available water sewers.
Advantages to this Method
Prior to this vehicle, all that could be done with this surplus winter commodity was to move it off the streets and highways to another location. Sometimes this place was a landfill-type area; sometimes the place was a near-by lake, river or other body of water. Before long, the litter and impurities that are also picked up by the plows, especially the sand and salt used by road crews to keep roadways navigable, created environmental hazards, especially when all this was dumped into a body of water.
Limitations have been placed by many communities and cities on the dumping of plowed snow into either land dumps or bodies of water. It is also much more expensive to operate all the dump trucks necessary for removal of the snow to these sites for disposal. It is much more friendly to the environment as well as cost-effective to just melt the problem away!
Disadvantages to this Method
There are disadvantages to this method of snow removal. One downside of this machine is that it operates at a slower pace as compared to most winter service vehicles due to the amount of time it takes to complete the whole scooping and melting process. Blowers can typically remove 5000 tons per hour while melters average about 500 tons per hour.
It is also more expensive to operate this machine due to the amount of energy it utilizes for keeping the water at a boiling temperature. It is also a very heavy truck so it does take more energy to move it along the streets as compared to other winter service vehicles.
In spite of its disadvantages, this unique device does offer a better way to remove snow particularly at airports. It is extremely important that a runway be clear of all debris and normal removal processes such as plowing alone can still leave some debris on the tarmac. The melter allows for safe and clean elimination of this common winter problem, certainly for airports. The problem can truly be liquefied away from the snow melter!