Leica Geosystems prepares for the 24th Winter Olympics in China 2022
Author: Jacob Hesselbjerg
Hosting a truly exceptional Winter Games for the first time in 2022 in China, Beijing will become the first city ever to host both the Summer and Winter Olympics.
Several of the venues from the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics will be repurposed for skating games, but entire new snow resorts are right now under construction in the mountainous Chongli district, approximately 200 kilometres north-west of Beijing.
Located in the Chongli district, Genting Secret Garden Snow Park will become the venue for the freestyle skiing and snowboarding events. The area is characterised by frosty temperatures and generally a lack of snow; therefore, the use of technical snow will be required.
Preparing with the Leica iCON alpine solutions to the games
The new ski resort in Genting Secret Garden Snow Park.
For this major event, Leica Geosystems’ long-term partner Prinoth AG won the contract of supplying 50 snow groomers.
“The full fleet in Genting Secret Gardens will be delivered with Leica-ready kits and the Prinoth Fleet Management software, providing resorts with the best conditions to equip the vehicles they need for the course design and slope preparations,” explains John Calverley, area sales manager responsible for the Olympic Games at Prinoth AG.
The Leica iCON alpine 3D snow measurement solution is a comprehensive suite of tools developed to deliver real-time data on the snow groomer’s in-cabin display. The solution shows the exact snow depths under the blade, enabling the operator to immediately respond to snow conditions and perfectly prepare slopes according to a 3D reference model.
Preparing for the Olympic Games starts several years in advance, thus Leica Geosystems, in collaboration with Prinoth AG, is involved from the early stages of planning.
First Leica iCON alpine solution installed in China
The base station from Leica Geosystems is installed on top of the newly built Genting Grand Hotel.
In November 2019, the first Leica iCON alpine solution in China was installed on a Prinoth Bison X snow groomer in the Genting Secret Garden resort. The first important step in installing an alpine solution is to set up a base station on the resort. A base station is a GNSS antenna serves to in real-time correct the satellite signals to the machine control solution on the snow groomer. Besides, the base station ensures that the 3D GNSS information on the panel is correct to correctly measure the snow depths on the machine for accurate machine guidance.
The installation requires 360-degree access from the antenna to the sky and the team need to ensure that the data from the base station and terrain model on the machine control solution is established in the same coordinate system.
Leica ConX – solving the Chinese cloud technology challenge
Equipping the snow groomers with machine control for the 2022 Winter Games also required the smooth running of the web-based cloud solution, Leica ConX, working in China. Leica ConX supports the fleet management tool of Prinoth’s snow groomers and allows:
- File transfer of design models to the machine control solutions.
- Transferring as-built documentation from the snow groomers.
- Remote communication between the office and machines.
Leica ConX also allows for a complete management system, alpinePRO, the analysis and management of the resort’s infrastructure, snow volume calculations and correct snow allocation. It is especially important when technical snow is used.
After locally hosting the database and implementing the solution in November 2019, Leica ConX is now smoothly running in China.
The Olympic Games boosts ski sports in China
The renovated ice and snow parks are already available to residents in the area, and winter sports are gaining popularity in China. The Chinese national skiing team is already training in the Genting Secret Garden resort.
“We are ready to promote the Leica iCON alpine solutions for snow groomers in China, and we hope to see a rise in the market,” says Lu Xing, manager in the machine control business department at Leica Geosystems in Beijing.