Big, bigger, biggest...

Chain drencher

The big chain trencher, Interdrain 6050, installs drainage pipes to keep subsoil water out of the excavation areas.


Archaeologists at Museum Lolland-Falster use monster machinery. Denmark's largest chain trencher is in use in Denmark's largest archaeological excavation project.


In connection with the archaeological excavations ahead of the development of the permanent link under the Fehmarn Belt, archaeologists from Museum Lolland-Falster are facing huge challenges. Not least because a large number of the excavations take place in a fossil lagoon, i.e. a shallow area separated from the actual sea by small isthmuses and islands. The area was embanked behind the Sea Flood Dike following the great Baltic Sea Flood in 1872.


Archaeologists facing extremely difficult excavation conditions

The area's highly complicated excavation-technical conditions with a high groundwater level and very loose sediments made it necessary to lower the groundwater in order to keep the excavation area free of water. The groundwater was lowered using perforated pipes laid directly on the moraine around the entire excavation area in a 30 cm wide trench. A week before excavations start, a chain trencher on caterpillar tracks lays out drains in the ground around the selected excavation area. In each corner of the area, the installed drainage pipes are connected to large vacuum pumps, which pump water away from the area. For this purpose, the huge 460 HP chain trencher Interdrain 6050 is used, which is capable of installing drainage pipes to a depth of max. 6 metres. This chain trencher is one of the two largest chain trenchers in Denmark.


Drawing of chain trencher

Drawing: Femern A/S


The chain trencher - a giant chainsaw

Interdrain 6050 is the largest type of tractor-mounted chain trenchers in Denmark. There are only two of this type of giant chain trenchers in all of Denmark.

The chain trencher is like a big chainsaw, which digs trenches in the ground for the installation of drainage pipes and cables. Afterwards, the trenches are covered again by a bulldozer.

Interdrain 6050 is particularly suitable for the installation of PE pressure pipes measuring from 50 to 400 mm and at a digging depth of 40-220 cm. It operates with a digging width from 30 to 60 cm. The machine can be displaced sideways for the installation of pipes, e.g. for roadside ditches. Naturally, the digging depth can be controlled by laser.

Completed work can be measured in by means of GPS.

The giant chain trencher belongs to the engineering company SM, which carries out chain trenching throughout Denmark.