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1. WO2020108712 - VÉHICULE DE TRAVAIL AGRICOLE

Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

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Claims

1. An agricultural work vehicle (100) for performing an agricultural work operation in an agricultural field, wherein said work vehicle comprises:

-a first drive module (2);

-a second drive module (4);

-a connecting element (6); said connecting element comprises a first axial end (8) and a second axial end (10);

-propulsion means (12) for propelling said work vehicle;

-steering means (14) for steering said work vehicle;

-a control unit (16) for controlling the operation of said work vehicle;

wherein said first drive module (2) comprises a first chassis (18);

wherein said second drive module (4) comprises a second chassis (20);

wherein said first drive module (2) comprises drive means (90) for allowing said first drive module to move over ground, said drive means (90) being suspended on said first chassis (18);

wherein said second drive module comprises drive means (92) for allowing said second drive module to move over ground, said drive means (92) being suspended on said second chassis (20);

wherein said first axial end (8) of said connecting element (6) is being attached to said first chassis (18); and wherein said second axial end (10) of said connecting element (6) is being connected to said second chassis (20);

wherein said work vehicle is comprising pivoting means (26), thereby allowing that the orientation of said first drive module (2) is being able to rotate in relation to the orientation of said second drive module (4), around an axis being essentially parallel to a longitudinal direction of said connecting element (6).

2. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 1, wherein said agricultural work vehicle is being a remotely controlled work vehicle and/or an autonomous work vehicle and/or a semi-autonomous work vehicle.

3. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 1 or 2, wherein said propulsion means (12) comprises one or more electric motors or one or more hydraulic drives (28) or one or more mechanical drives for driving said drive means (90,92).

4. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said drive means (90,92) each comprises two or more sets of wheels, wherein all wheels in a specific set of wheels are sharing a common axis of rotation; or wherein said drive means (90,92) each comprises one or two or more caterpillar belts.

5. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 4, wherein said drive means (90,92) each comprises two sets (22) of wheels (24), said sets (22) of wheels (24) being arranged behind each other, as seen relative to a non-turning direction of movement of said vehicle.

6. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 5, wherein in respect of a specific set (22) of wheels (24), said set of wheel comprises one, two, three, or four or more wheels (24).

7. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 4, wherein said drive means (90,92) comprises one, two, three, or four or more caterpillar belts, optionally being arranged sideways to each other and/or behind each other.

8. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 5 - 7, wherein said propulsion means are configured for driving one or two sets (22) of wheels (24) and/or caterpillar belts of each drive module (2,4).

9. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 1 - 8, wherein said propulsion means (12) comprises hydraulic drives for driving said drive means (90,92) and wherein said agricultural work vehicle comprises one or more hydraulic pumps (30) for driving said hydraulic drives (28), wherein said agricultural work vehicle furthermore comprises a motor (32) for driving said hydraulic pump (30), such as an electric motor; or a combustion engine, such as a petrol engine or a diesel engine, or a biogas engine.

10. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 1 - 8, wherein said propulsion means (12) comprises an electric motor for driving said drive means (90,92).

11. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 1 -8 wherein said propulsion means (12) comprises mechanical means for driving said drive means (90,92).

12. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein one or more of said wheels (24) independently is/are having an outer diameter of 25 - 300 cm, such as 30 - 275 cm, for example 35 - 250 cm, such as 40 - 225 cm, e.g. 45 - 200 cm, such as 50 - 175 cm, e.g. 55 - 150 cm, such as 60 - 125 cm, e.g. 65 - 100 cm, such as 70 - 95 cm, such as 75 - 90 cm, e.g. 80 - 85 cm.

13. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein at least one set (22) of wheels (24) of each drive module (2,4) is being pivotally suspended in a wheel base (34) on its corresponding chassis (18,20) in such a way that the pitch of the rotational plane of said one or more wheels (24) of said set (22) of wheels can be altered, relative to a fixed geographical direction, and wherein said steering means (14) comprises actuation means (34) for altering said pitch.

14. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said steering means (14) comprises means for allowing propelled wheels (24) of one drive module (2,4) to rotate at a rotational speed which is different from the rotational speed of the propelled wheels (24) of the other drive module (4,2).

15. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the shortest distance from the center of a wheel (24) of one drive module (2,4) to the center of a wheel (24) of the other drive module (4,2) is selected from the from the range of 20 - 4000 cm, such as 30 - 3500 cm, e.g. 40 - 3000 cm, such as 50 - 2500 cm, for example 60 - 2000 cm, e.g. 70 1800 cm, such as 80 1700 cm, e.g. 90 1600 cm, for example 100 1500 cm, e.g. 150 - 1400 cm, e.g. 200 - 1300 cm, such as 250 - 1200 cm, such as 300 - 1100 cm, such as 350 - 1000 cm, such as 400 - 900 cm, such as 500 - 800 cm, e.g. 600 - 700 cm.

16. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims comprising an energy storage or energy provider (36), such as a fuel tank or a battery; or one or more solar panels; or one or more fuel cell modules in combination with a fuel gas tank, such as a hydrogen tank or a methane tank.

17. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims further comprising coupling means (38) for allowing coupling to said agricultural work vehicle of an agricultural implement, said coupling means (37) optionally being arranged at or on said connecting element (6), said coupling means optionally being in the form of a three-point hitch or in the form of an A frame.

18. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said first drive module (2) and said second drive module (4) are having an elongate shape.

19. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said first axial end (8) of said connecting element (6) is attached to said first chassis (18) of said first drive module (2) at an end thereof; and wherein said second axial end (10) of said connecting element (6) is attached to said second chassis (20) of said second drive module (4) at an end thereof.

20. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said first drive module (2) and said second drive module (4) are arranged essentially in a parallel orientation relative to each other.

21. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said first drive module (2) and said second drive module (4) are arranged relative to each other in such a way that a free space (38) is being present between part of said first drive module (2) and part of said second drive module (4).

22. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 21, wherein the free space (38) between the first drive module (2) and the second drive module (4) in a region appearing in a direction perpendicular to the connecting element (6), such as in a forward pointing direction and/or in a rearward pointing direction, is devoid from any element connecting said first drive module (2) to said second drive module (4).

23. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said pivoting means (26) is arranged at or on said connecting element (6).

24. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein each drive means (90,92) is being rigidly suspended at or on its corresponding chassis (18,20), i.e. in a non-spring-loaded manner.

25. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein said work vehicle comprises a monitoring unit for visually monitoring soil and/or vegetation during operation thereof.

26. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein said work vehicle comprises means for allowing, during driving a curved trajectory, the outer drive means, such as the outer wheels, to rotate a higher angular velocity, compared to the inner drive means, such as the inner wheels.

27. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said pivoting means (26) comprises a bracket (40); said bracket comprises a back surface (42) and a front surface (44); wherein said back surface (42) of said bracket is being fastened to said first chassis (18) of said first drive module (2) at a side thereof facing the second drive module

(4);

wherein said bracket (40) comprises an inner cylinder (46) extending from the front surface (44) of said bracket (40) in a direction towards the second drive module (4);

wherein said bracket (40) comprises a recess (48) between said front surface (44) and said back surface (42), said recess is defining a plane being essentially parallel to said back surface (42) of said bracket;

wherein said first axial end (8) of said connecting element (6) comprises a flange (50) extending from an outer surface (52) of said connecting element (6);

wherein said flange (50) of said connecting element is being accommodated in said recess (48) of said bracket (40) in such a way that said inner cylinder (46) of said bracket is being accommodated in the interior (54) of said connecting element (6).

28. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 27, wherein one or more bearings

(56) is/are being arranged between said inner cylinder (46) of said bracket (40) and an inner surface (58) of said connecting element (6).

29. An agricultural work vehicle according to claim 27 or 28, wherein said bearing(s) (56) is/are a roller bearing or a glide bearing, such as a metal or an alloy bearing, such as a bronze bearing; or a polymer bearing, such as a Teflon bearing; or a composite bearing, such as a carbon fiber bearing.

30. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 1 - 26, wherein said connecting element (6) comprises a first part (60) and a second part (62);

wherein said first part (60) of said connecting element (6) comprises a first axial end (64) and a second axial end (66);

wherein said second part (62) of said connecting element (6) comprises a first axial end (68) and a second axial end (70);

wherein said first axial end (64) of said first part (60) of said connecting element (6) is being fixed to said first chassis (18) of said first drive module (2);

wherein said second axial end (70) of said second part (62) of said connecting element (6) is being fixed to said second chassis (20) of said second drive module (4);

wherein said pivoting means (26) comprises a bearing (56), said bearing comprises a first attachment part (72), and a second attachment part (74); said first attachment part (72) is being pivotally suspended relative to said second attachment part (74);

wherein said second axial end (66) of said first part (60) of said connecting element (6) is being fixed to said first attachment part (72) of said bearing (56); and wherein said first axial end (68) of said second part (62) of said connecting element (6) is being fixed to said second attachment part (74) of said bearing (56);

wherein said bearing thereby being arranged on said connecting element (6) at a position between said first drive module (2) and said second drive module (4).

31. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims further comprising an agricultural implement for performing an agricultural work operation.

32. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 31, wherein said agricultural implement is being selected from the group comprising: a tillage implement, a harrow, a seed drill, a cultivator, a weeder, a sprayer, a spreader, an irrigator, a harvesting implement.

33. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims further comprising a monitoring unit for monitoring the operation of said work vehicle.

34. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein said control unit (16) is being configured for receiving and storing information on a data storage (76), relating to one or more of the following: geographic coordinates relating to the boundary of an agricultural field to be worked; geographic coordinates relating to the boundary of one or more obstacles being present in an agricultural field to be worked; geographic coordinates relating to a preferred trajectory to be followed by said agricultural work vehicle; information relating to the effective working width of an agricultural implement to be carried/towed by said agricultural implement; information relating to the interrow distance between rows of crops in the agricultural field to be worked.

35. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said control unit (16) comprises switching means (78) for allowing an operator to switch between an autonomous working mode and/or a remotely controlled working mode and/or a semi-autonomous working mode of said agricultural work vehicle (100).

36. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims, wherein said agricultural work vehicle comprises position indicating means (80), such as a GNSS (Global

Navigation Satellite System) receiver, such as a GPS receiver for providing information relating to a geographical position of said vehicle.

37. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to claim 36, wherein said control unit (16) is configured to receive information from said position indicating means (80), relating to said geographical position of said work vehicle.

38. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the claims 34 - 37, wherein said control unit (16) is being configured to provide instructions to said propulsion means (12) and to said steering means (14) of said work vehicle so as to make said work vehicle follow a desired trajectory on said agricultural field; wherein geographical coordinates of said desired trajectory is being or has been provided to said control unit (16).

39. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein said agricultural work vehicle comprises input means (82) for programming said control unit (16), such as in the form of a receiver for wirelessly receiving information relating to a

programming of said control unit.

40. An agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of the preceding claims wherein said agricultural work vehicle comprises a display (84), such as a monitor for displaying information relating to an operational state of said agricultural vehicle.

41. Use of an agricultural work vehicle (100) according to any of preceding claims for performing an agricultural work operation.

42. Use according to claim 41, wherein said agricultural work operation is being selected from the group comprising: surveying of the agricultural field, ploughing soil, harrowing soil, seeding seeds into soil, cultivation of soil, weeding of soil, spraying, such as spraying of a herbicide or of a pesticide, spreading of fertilizer, irrigation of the field with water, harvesting crops.