The Hercules 210.10 telehandler helping to renovate the Ritom hydroelectric plant

When it comes to large engineering works such as the Ritom hydroelectric plant in Switzerland, it is essential that project managers make informed choices, starting with which construction vehicles to use. Tough, strong and efficient vehicles can really make the difference on a construction site, avoiding delivery delays or sudden work stoppages.

The decision to trust in the best solutions on the market led Swiss Federal Railways (FFS) and utility company Azienda Elettrica Ticinese to opt for one of the most powerful telehandlers in the DIECI range: the Hercules 210.10. Let’s discover all the advantages of this telehandler that make it the number-one choice for building the plant’s new underground pressurised pipeline.

A telehandler on the assembly line in the Canton of Ticino

The Ritom plant is one of the most important FSS projects south of the Alps, which has seen resources concentrated for almost 50 years. After engineering works to make the tunnels safe, the plan envisages the construction of a new underground pressurised pipeline as the next phase.

This will require the transport of hundreds of tonnes of 12-metre-long pipes from the Piotta base to Lake Ritom, where they will be used to install the underground pipeline. It is an extremely demanding and complex project that requires the use of a powerful, versatile vehicle capable of offering excellent performance even in demanding work cycles.

The vehicle chosen to carry out this arduous and important task is a Hercules 210.10 telehandler. Arbor AG, DIECI dealer for Switzerland, provided the perfect response to the needs of the project by proposing one of the best DIECI telehandlers in terms of strength and load capacity. The vehicle is used to lift, transport and deposit the heavy pipes onto lorries, which transport them to the construction site where they are lowered into a shaft using an 18-tonne winch.

Why Hercules

Hercules telehandlers, which are the strongest vehicles in the DIECI range, have proven themselves to be the perfect solution for lifting extreme payloads even to great heights. They are ideal for large construction sites, mines, airports and shipyards. The vehicle cab is operator-friendly in every way, offering safety, handling, comfort and wide visibility, as well as a pleasant and functional working environment.

The engine power and torque ensure maximum performance, while the 4 driving and steered wheels provide traction and agility on all surfaces, making this the right vehicle on atypical terrain, mountain settings and in tunnels.

Advantages of the Hercules 210.10 telehandler

Thanks to its characteristics, the Hercules telehandler is the ideal vehicle for the Ritom hydroelectric plant, which has opted to purchase one of the top-of-the range models: the Hercules 210.10, a telehandler capable of lifting up to 21 tonnes and reaching a height of 10 metres.

The Hercules 210.10 telehandler offers extreme manoeuvrability and effectiveness thanks to:

  • Enhanced Soft Motion, for proportional and adjustable boom movement.
  • Intelligent controls that automatically adapt to the connected equipment, making them easy and intuitive to use. This functionality saves time and provides the vehicle operator with safe, clear and simple controls.
  • Lateral tilt corrector: the vehicle adapts to all terrain types, for safe levelling in any situation.

Furthermore, equipped with specific tools its performance is further optimised, simplifying and speeding up the lifting and handling of different types of material. Thanks to the forks and hook for heavy and bulky loads, the telehandler can easily lift pipes and ensure an efficient, safe and smooth workflow.

The versatility of the Hercules 210.10 telehandler also enables it to complete tasks normally performed by other vehicles, namely:

  • Forklift trucks, offering maximum stability and power. The winch transforms the telehandler into the right vehicle for heavy payloads, while the jibs and hooks make it ideal for heavy and bulky loads.
  • Aerial platforms, thanks to the 10-metre reach height and the remote control with integrated display. Also, with the extensible front basket and trilateral baskets, it has a load capacity of up to 1000 kg and a width of 4 metres.

The Ritom plant — eco-friendly power generation

The electrified Gotthard railway line in Switzerland is powered by the Ritom hydroelectric plant overlooking Ambri-Piotta in Ticino. In addition to numerous renovation works, this extremely complex and demanding project involves relocating the pressurised pipeline, which was previously routed overland, inside the mountain.

The new plant will replace the current plant built by FFS in 1917, and is considered a strategic project that will allow the partners involved to meet the future energy needs of citizens, businesses and travellers alike, with minimal impact on the environment. Indeed, the new plant is an important step forward towards the use of renewable energy sources, with the aim of meeting the energy requirements of the whole of Ticino.

It is an ambitious but essential project for the entire region, which is nearing completion thanks partly to the Hercules 210.10, the multi-purpose, robust and efficient vehicle for large construction sites like that of the Ritom plant.