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XtraGrass hybrid turf system offers the best of both worlds

XtraGrass hybrid turf system offers the best of both worlds
November 14, 2012

HG Sports Turf new XtraGrass hybrid turf system combines the positive properties of natural grass with the strength of synthetic turf to create a higher quality year-round playing surface.

With natural grass reinforced with synthetic turf fibres, XtraGrass offers a perfect combination between the playability of natural grass and the durability of synthetic turf – the synthetic fibres partially absorb the wear and tear on the natural grass blades, which makes the product more resistant to wear than a standard field of natural grass. 

In addition, areas with divots belong to the past, as the structure of XtraGrass holds the natural grass in its place. 

The system consists of synthetic turf fibres woven into a backing, which can be laid directly on the prepared rootzone of a pitch. 

XtraGrass is carefully filled with a specified blend of root zone material and is sown with grass seed. After a few days the seed germinates and grows between the synthetic turf fibres. This results in a surface of extremely strong natural grass that is resistant against slidings and tackles. While the grass grows the mat partially biodegrades, leaving space for the roots to grow through the mat, while maintaining a strong support structure for the playing surface. 

Ideal solution 
The use of synthetic turf fibres provides stabilisation of the top rootzone material and protection of the natural grass plant, thereby reducing playing damage and maintaining a level, even playing surface. 

The advantages: 
• Increased playing capacity but still on natural turf 
• Excellent playing possibilities, even with bad weather 
• Protection of the crown of the natural grass plant, enabling quick recovery 
• Excellent stability and water permeability 
• Extremely level and consistent playing field 
• Even in winter a visual green field 
• With or without natural grass an XtraGrass pitch conforms to FIFA 1 star standard 
• Available in turf rolls, and playable immediately after installation 
• Maintained like natural grass, without significant restrictions 
• And XtraGrass is 100% recyclable! 

Tested to perfection 
A series of tests and trials have been conducted on XtraGrass at ISA-sport in the Netherlands, Labosport in France and Sport Turf Research Institute (STRI) in the UK. The most extensive trials have been conducted at STRI in the UK, parallel to the construction of the Coventry Ricoh Arena XtraGrass pitch. 

Summary of the results: 
1. The presence of the XtraGrass reinforcement, does not significantly affect plant development 
2. Results of measurements for ball bounce and ball roll behavior all fit within the prescribed standards 
3. All trials with XtraGrass reinforcement had significantly higher traction values than the un-reinforced natural grass reference trials. The advantage of using XtraGrass reinforcement is evident in that even under high intensity wear it still has better traction than un-reinforced natural turf subjected to moderate wear. 
4. Rainwater infiltration rates for all treatments of XtraGrass were very good. 
5. The results for hardness, ball bounce and grip behaviour are similar to STRI measurements on stadium fields in general. 
6. XtraGrass even meets FIFA standards.

Benefits of XtraGrass 
The XtraGrass system can be easily installed on site, requiring only standard pitch installation equipment and utilising a high proportion of local labour. It typically takes the same amount of time to install as a standard natural grass pitch. 

However, for those clubs in a hurry, XtraGrass is also grown offsite and can be playable within days of installation. This has enormous advantages for clubs who need to partially or completely re-turf their pitch mid season. 

Other benefits include: 

Playing benefits 
Consistency – XtraGrass provides a consistently high quality playing surface year round – traction, pitch hardness and bounce tests all come out well with XtraGrass. 
Reduced Risk – The risk of injury caused by an uneven surface and divots are eliminated – the XtraGrass structure ensures the pitch stays divot free throughout the year. 
Training – Players can train on the pitch they play matches on, at many clubs the main pitch has to be preserved for match days only. By enabling players to train on the main pitch, it gives them an intangible advantage over their opponents who are less familiar with the exact pitch dimensions and playing surface. 
Climate – Even under wet conditions, players are much less likely to slip and fall on XtraGrass as the playing surface retains its stability at all times. 

Operational benefits 
Installation -XtraGrass is simple to install, requiring only standard pitch construction equipment and utilising a high proportion of local staff who are supervised by a few skilled installers – much of the technology is incorporated at the time of manufacture. 
Speed – If installation is needed in a short period of time, pre-grown XtraGrass turf rolls can be laid very quickly and playable within days. 
Timing – XtraGrass can be installed at the time that is most convenient for the grounds staff and club. A pitch can be playable within six weeks of seeding. 
Maintenance -XtraGrass uses a specified root zone mixture which creates the ideal growing environment for natural grass. During a plants life-cycle, biomass will build-up in the synthetic fibres. XtraGrass allows the biomass to be thinned or removed to ensure the synthetic fibres remain relevant. 
Aeration – XtraGrass allows aeration using standard maintenance equipment and this ensures the surface remains in top condition. 
Re-turfing – If, for some reason, part of the surface has to be replaced, this can be done very easily and quickly with XtraGrass. 
Replacement – XtraGrass can be replaced in part or in full. 
The removed backing and synthetic fibres are fully recyclable, leaving no waste disposal issues. 
Aesthetics – Even when the natural grass is worn, the pitch will still have a good visual appearance to both spectators and to TV cameras due to the green synthetic fibres showing through the surface. 

Financial benefits 
Initial Cost -XtraGrass is much more cost effective to install than a full synthetic turf system, sometimes by as much as half the price. 
On-going Costs – Once installed, XtraGrass costs no more than a standard grass pitch to maintain. Ultimately, with less divots there will be less maintenance. 
Equipment Costs – There is no requirement for specialist maintenance equipment with XtraGrass. 
End of Life Costs – As XtraGrass is 100% recyclable, there is no end cost liability for disposal. 

Training Centre Costs – As XtraGrass allows much higher pitch usage it may be possible to reduce the size/number of pitches at the training facilities, thereby reducing on-going maintenance costs. 
Revenue Generation – The resilience of XtraGrass, allows the pitch to be used for some additional events on non match days, including corporate football days, concerts and public meetings, generating additional revenue for the club. 

Environmental benefits 
We focus our research and development on the application of innovative and environmentally-friendly production solutions related to sustainable product development inspired by nature. 

As a response to social change and environmental demands, the suppliers offer XtraGrass – an environmentally-friendly mixture of natural grass and synthetic turf which is 100% recyclable. 

XtraGrass has developed a patented weaving technique. Through this manufacturing process it is possible to use the materials from the same product family; that is polypropylene and polyethylene. As a consequence, all the components of the synthetic turf, the backing as well as the fibres, can be made of the same material making the synthetic turf 100% recyclable. 

Besides the required technical standards, this patented weaving technique offers many additional advantages compared to the conventional method of producing synthetic turf. It allows for a higher density (dTex), an enhanced tuft binding (better resilience), and the combination of various fibre types and different fibre heights in one system (natural look and feel). 

And even more important, it will contribute enormously to the playing characteristics of our Green Generation products. 

In short, the environmental benefits are: 
Efficient Production – with a new 24,000 m² manufacturing facility, designed to the highest environmental standards, GreenFields is able to reduce energy and water consumption, carbon dioxide emissions, and waste water. 
100% Recyclable – Synthetic turf products often comprise of more than one type of material making separation and therefore recycling very difficult. To overcome this problem XtraGrass uses the same material in the fibres and backing eliminating the need for separation and making it 100% recyclable. 
Maximizing Local Labour Input – By focusing the technology at the factory, this means that only a few skilled installers are required to travel to the site. All of the additional labour can be sourced locally, cutting down the carbon footprint generated by unnecessary travel. 

XtraGrass applications 
XtraGrass can withstand a high intensity use and performs well for grip and traction tests. This makes the product suitable for different applications. 

Stadiums - XtraGrass' high wear tolerance in combination with excellent test results for player's grip or traction make the product suitable for use in a stadium environment. In the UK the pitches for the Oxford Kassam Stadium and Coventry Ricoh Arena have chosen XtraGrass for this purpose to create a stable and level playing surface under dual use (football and rugby). 

It is widely known that in most larger stadiums the growing conditions for grass are reduced and hence the introduction of artificial growing lights have proved to be successful. In combination with XtraGrass the result of artificial growth light systems will be enhanced. Even when the goal areas show signs of wear and tear, the synthetic grass fibres of the XtraGrass system will appear green for both the audience and the players. 

Training pitches - Due to its high wear tolerance the XtraGrass system is ideal for use on training pitches for professional use as well as community use. Even when the natural grass component of the system disappears after 250 hours of use, the rootzone and the synthetic fibre reinforcement guarantee a playing surface that meets international standards. 

The natural grass component will have to be regenerated in the summer break period in order to have a 100% natural grass cover at the start of each season. 

Intensively used areas - XtraGrass is the ideal system to add strength to high wear areas such as goal mouths, linesman runs, penalty areas and centre of the pitches. The reinforcement can be introduced and seeded on site, or it can be grown and prepared off site in turf rolls. The grass varieties used will ideally meet the specifications as for the reminder of the pitch in order to blend in. 

The best time for the partial installation of XtraGrass is during the closed season maintenance but as turf rolls it can be installed any time. 

Installation of XtraGrass 
The XtraGrass system can be easily installed on site with local labour and standard equipment. XtraGrass can be installed with locally produced rootzones. It can also be maintained in a nursery, in turf rolls, ready for quick and easy installation. 

The XtraGrass turf specialists can assist customers with their sports field design, including requirements for slope, drainage, playability and other relevant properties. Various components can be added if the customer desires so, or if local circumstances demand. Examples include field irrigation, heating, lighting and ventilation. 

The upper and lower rootzone material, is a mixture of sand and specialty organic materials. This composition must meet the specifications of XtraGrass to create an ideal base for the growth of the natural grass, and for the drainage and the stability of the field. The selection of the correct components is of decisive importance for the quality of the overall turf system. 

For more information contact HG Sports Turf Pty Ltd, the exclusive XtraGrass licensee for Australia and New Zealand, on 03 9329 8154, E: 





28th August 2018 - FIELDTURF FIRST

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