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Airport FPS and habitat management are important factors within airport safety. After all, the airport industry is increasingly struggling with bird strikes; a phenomenon that is a major problem for flight safety worldwide. The cause of the problem has a direct link to grass management. A subject where TRILO can apply its expertise.

TRILO has spent years researching the relationship between optimal grass management (tall and short grass policies) and the risk of bird strikes / wildlife strikes. Discussions with various parties within the airport sector, including airport habitat managers, have taught us a lot about the issue and possible solutions. This eventually led to the development of a series of unique machines specifically suited for optimal grass management at airports. An important contribution to flight safety!


Bird and wildlife strikes: some facts & figures

Did you know that:

  • between 2000 and 2021 in Germany alone, 18,310 birdstrikes were registered?

  • some 97,751 wildlife strikes were reported worldwide between 2008 and 2015? (source: ICAO)

  • the annual damage due to bird strikes worldwide is estimated at over US$600 million (source: aviationmetric)

  • there were 292 fatalities worldwide between 1988 and 2019 due to wildlife strikes? (source: FAA)

  • one bird strike causes €150,000 damage on average if there is also damage to the aircraft? If the aircraft is not damaged, the cost still remains around €15,000.

  • Per year the damages in Germany amount to approx. € 17-45 million.

Increasing bird and wildlife strike occurrence

The above figures show that the problem of bird / wildlife strikes is common and poses a significant threat to flight safety. And this problem is growing, as the number of bird strikes is increasing. Not only because of the increased number of flights and aircraft movements and the trend towards faster and quieter aircraft. But also due to the increased population of birds near airports.

Eagle Flying
Wet grass


What do you do when you want to banish something or someone from an area? You take away the first necessity of life: food!

So in this case too, the most effective and logical solution to ban the birds seems to be taking away their food source. After all: no food, no reason to stay! And the number one food source for birds near airports hides in the substantial areas of grass. Insects, reptiles and small rodents thrive in these grass areas, making them an attractive area for (predatory) birds. Conclusion: crucial in reducing the risk of bird strikes is an effective habitat management, and hence effective grass management. This can be achieved by effective mowing of the grass areas. And that is where our TRILO machines come in!


Of course, mowing of the grass areas is common at airports. . But just old-school mowing is not enough to increase air safety. In fact, it might even reduce safety! After all, leaving the grass clippings behind after mowing poses a risk, in several ways.

Flight safety through good grass management!​

Of course, mowing of the grass areas is common at airports. . But just old-school mowing is not enough to increase air safety. In fact, it might even reduce safety! After all, leaving the grass clippings behind after mowing poses a risk, in several ways.

Smart habitat management

Imagine a plane taxiing on the runway. The wings of an aircraft may hang over the side of the taxiway, right above the grass surface. The engines are now quite close to the grass and can easily pick up grass clippings. Or jet engines blow them on the runway. Thus creating a risk for the next plane taking off. When grass clippings end up in jet engines, they can damage fan blades, the edges of compressor blades or vanes. . Apart from this, grass that is not immediately removed can spread across the site and eventually clog drainage channels and gutters.

Furthermore, if grass clippings are left behind, an important food source for birds also stays behind Namely: the seed heads of the grass.. A favorite food source for granivorous birds. And, clippings that are left to rot over time also attract insects.

Removing Airport FOD

A similar danger is posed by FOD, another common problem at airports. FOD like plastic or paper waste, trash, broken parts, rags, etc. Any particle or substance that should not be on the runway, might find its way into an aircraft engine and is therefore extremely dangerous.

Image by John Cameron
Wet grass

So apart from mowing the grass areas, it is just as important to collect the grass clippings And that is exactly what TRILO machines do!

Mowing, collecting grass clippings and collecting FOD: all in one pass!

So the importance of mowing and collecting grass clippings at the same time may be obvious. TRILO develops and manufactures machines that can quickly mow large areas of grass while simultaneously vacuuming and collecting grass clippings and FOD. Especially for Airport FOD and habitat management, we have developed a comprehensive range of machines specifically for this industry. A series of unique machines, each with its own features. After all, all airports are different and face their own specific conditions.

Benefits of efficient mowing & collecting
  • Mowing is done in the shortest possible time

  • Time for runway closure is kept to a minimum

  • Grass clippings are directly removed from runways

  • Any FOD present is immediately removed as well

  • Time-consuming and costly FOD walks are no longer necessary

  • Reduced risk of clogging drains

TRILO machine features:
  • Huge cutting width (working width up to 6.9 metres)

  • High working speed

  • Large hopper (up to 30 m3) reducing the need to drive back and forth to the unloading site

  • Easy to operate by one person

  • Deployable in all weather conditions

  • A suitable machine available for every airport

  • Low TCO

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Vacuum Mower C4

Vacuum Mower C4

  • Mow and collect in one pass.

  • Heavy-duty mowing deck.

  • Optionally available with suction hose.

  • Large radial tires for low ground pressure.

  • Powered by power take-off (PTO).

  • Optional multiple work axes available.

  • High working speed.

  • Operated by one man.

  • 2.15 m high tipper.

  • European type approval

  • Working widths: 1.8 – 2.1 m

Cut And Collect In One Pass

For (heavy-duty) compact cut & collect mowing

Vacuum mower C4 is a versatile and compact vacuum mower with a loading volume capacity of 4 m3. The machine allows you to mow and collect in one pass. The C4 has a reinforced (heavy-duty) mowing deck specially developed for mowing with a heavy flail shaft under tough conditions. A powerful fan in a housing with replaceable wear plates effortlessly vacuums the cut material.

Because of the compactness of the C4, this vacuum sweeper suitable for working along obstacles and places where there is little room to manoeuvre. The fan is driven by a PTO drive shaft attached to the tractor and requires an output of  70 – 90 hp (51 – 66 kW).

For TRILO vacuum mowers various mower shafts and knives are available. For instance a heavy-duty flail shaft for mowing tall and coarse vegetation. Or a twisted flail mower shaft for mowing with a nice finish. You can get started right away wherever you want because the TRILO C4 now has type approval for transport on public roads.

Vacuum Mower C8-20

Vacuum Mower C8-c20

  • Mow and collect in one pass.

  • Can be configured online to your needs.

  • Optionally available with suction hose.

  • Compact and manoeuvrable.

  • Extra wide radial tires for low ground pressure.

  • Powered by power take-off (PTO).

  • Be able to work longer due to a larger loading volume.

  • Easy unloading by means of a self-unloading chain floor.

  • Easy to operate by one man.

  • Working width: 1.8 – 2.1 m.

Cut And Collect Mowers: For Mowing And Collecting In One Pass

Vacuum Mower C8-C20:  cut & collect vacuum mowers. They are equipped with a heavy flail mowing shaft and a have design that enables mowing and collecting in one pass. Despite their compact dimensions, they have a large loading volume that reduces the time spent driving back and forth to and from an unloading site. In this way, you can work longer! A powerful impeller provides enormous suction power and is placed in a housing fitted with replaceable wear plates.

Although the vacuum mowers are compact, they can be equipped with a large hopper with load volumes ranging from 8 to 20m3. Besides, online you can choose from various options to put together your vacuum mower to suit your needs. There is a choice of various lighting options, action frames, dust and noise reduction, undercarriages and mowing axles. Extra-wide radial tyres ensure very low ground pressure. A TRILO vacuum mower is driven via a PTO shaft connected to the tractor. Power requirements range from 90 – 130 hp (66 – 96 KW).

The C8-C20 vacuum mowers are available with loading volumes of: 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, and 20 m3. 

Vacuum Mower C30W Hi-volume Wide-area

  • Low cost of ownership

  • Specially designed for (heavy-duty) airport mowing

  • Cuts and collects grass clippings and FOD in one pass

  • Keeps working in the toughest weather conditions

  • Offers high working speed due to its 6.9 meters working width

  • Less driving back and forth to unload due to a large loading volume 30 m2

  • Results in fewer runway closures because the TRILO C30W works fast and efficiently

  • Safe and easy to operate by one person

  • High quality, durable and built to last machine

  • Enables effective wildlife habitat management to reduce wildlife strikes

Wide-Area Cut And Collect On Airports

Vacuum mower C30W hi-volume wide-area : a cut and collect mower specially developed for heavy-duty airport mowing. The design is based on our extensive experience in airport mowing and the needs of our customers. Its large loading volume of 30 m3 results in fewer unloading trips, so you will be able to work longer. Its large working width of 6.9 meters and high working speed also means that the TRILO C30W can easily mow up to 11 hectares per hour. The TRILO C30W requires a minimum of maintenance. It is built to last and will function perfectly under any weather conditions. The TRILO C30W is also safe and easy to operate – it is a unique machine that has no equal in the market and really takes airport mowing to the next level.

Low impact on the soil

Extra-large, low-pressure tires with an optional tire pressure system ensure optimal weight distribution. This keeps the impact of the vehicle on the ground to a minimum, preventing soil damage like ruts and tire marks. Less soil compaction ensures a healthy, open soil structure in which water can drain more easily. This means less chance of flooding and fewer puddles of water that attract birds/wildlife.

TRILO Floating wings

The TRILO C30W is equipped with TRILO floating wings for a working width of 6.9 meters – you can mow 11 hectares in one hour. Its carefully designed suspension also means that both wings follow the exact contours of the ground. This results in an even cut across the entire airside area.

Airflow and dust suppression

The TRILO C30W has a powerful optimized airflow system (TRILO direct flow). This ensures that most dust particles are removed from the airflow by the TRILO active dust filter and water atomization system. The airflow is then routed behind the tailgate and blown downwards under the TRILO C30W. This greatly reduces the number of particles spread through the air.

Mowing grass and collecting FOD

Waste, often carried by the wind, spreads over wide grass areas at airports and poses a risk to flight safety. The optimally shaped air inlet (TRILO direct flow) in combination with a powerful fan ensures that grass clippings AND present FOD are effortlessly removed and safely collected in one pass. By the fact that FOD is collected at the same time, there is less need for time-consuming FOD walks.

Safe and easy to work with

We have put a lot of effort into making the TRILO C30W as simple and user-friendly as possible. Its intuitive control elements are logically arranged, easy and safe to operate. Any operator anywhere in the world can start using the TRILO C30W after basic instruction. Machine operators will also enjoy working with the TRILO, which will be reflected in better results.

Low operating cost

Our goal was to build the best machine possible in terms of performance and durability, as well as in terms of cost of ownership. The C30W’s simple but carefully thought-out design means that it requires very little maintenance. And because you can perform two tasks at once, you save manpower and fuel costs. The large working width and high working speed also limit costly runway closures.

Vacuum Mower C30W
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