A three-year trial program of new snow clearing tech for MN-Dot is in the middle of year two, and Maintenance Research Engineer Tom Peters says with each passing snow event they hope to gather more data about the performance of the new tools they are trying out.

“In a nutshell, this is a good step to do numerical value assessments and see if we feel it is worthwhile or not.”

Peters says different technology is being employed in different parts of the state and will then be shuffled next winter to compare how the tools work in areas where needs differ. Included in the tested equipment, a side float, an underbody scraper, and a new, potentially more efficient, slurry spreader.

Peters says leadership over the years consistently gives MN-DOT a lot of freedom to try out new things.

“Despite who we have a governor, or who we have as a commissioner, we enjoy a lot of support to try new ideas and new innovations. So i think it is a good matchup we have here in Minnesota.”