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Title:
AN INTERCONNECTING SYSTEM OF GUARDRAILS
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2014/141123
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
The interconnecting system for two guardrails which are predisposed along an edge of a carriageway with an end of a terminal band (N1) of a first guardrail (R1) distanced from an end of an initial band of a second guardrail (R2) comprises: at least a first housing (1), delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (01) of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1), at least a second housing (2), delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (02) of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), and at least an interconnecting modular interconnecting group (G) comprising a first modular connecting element (G1), a conjoining element (G3) and a second modular connecting element (G2). The first modular connecting element (G1), the second modular connecting element (G2) and the conjoining element (G3) are reciprocally assemblage and couplable, with the first modular connecting element (G1) exhibiting a first portion (11) positionable and fixable in the first housing (1) and with the second modular connecting element (G2) exhibiting a relative first portion (21) positionable and fixable in the second housing (2) so as to constitute an interconnection between the ends of the two bands (N1, N2).

Inventors:
IMPERO, Pasquale (Via Roma, 222, Casalnuovo Di Napoli, I-80013, IT)
Application Number:
IB2014/059726
Publication Date:
September 18, 2014
Filing Date:
March 13, 2014
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
IMPERO, Pasquale (Via Roma, 222, Casalnuovo Di Napoli, I-80013, IT)
International Classes:
E01F15/04
Domestic Patent References:
WO2007103138A2
Foreign References:
GB2439080A
DE202009000423U1
DE102011109790A1
Other References:
None
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
DALL'OLIO, Daniele et al. (Invention S.r.l, Via delle Armi 1, Bologna, I-40137, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1) An interconnecting system of two guardrails each comprising undulated bands mounted to one another consecutively and continuatively which are predisposed along an edge of a carriageway with an end of a terminal band (N1) of a first guardrail (R1) distanced from an end of an initial band of a second guardrail (R2), characterised in that it comprises: at least a first housing (1), at an end portion of a face of the undulated terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) opposite the face of the band facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (01) of the undulated band (N1), at least a second housing (2), at an end portion of a face of the undulated initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2) opposite the face of the band facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (02) of the undulated band (N2), at least a modular interconnecting group (G) comprising a first modular connecting element (G1), a conjoining element (G3) and a second modular connecting element (G2), wherein: the first modular connecting element (G1) has a shape that is such as to exhibit a first portion (11) and a second portion (12), the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) being reciprocally arranged at an angle, the first modular connecting element (G1) being such that the first portion (11) thereof exhibits dimensions and a shape that are complementary to a shape of the first housing (1) such as to be positionable therein with an orientation that is such that the second portion (12) projects from the end of the band (N1) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the second housing (2) of the end portion of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), the second modular connecting element (G2) has a shape that is such as to exhibit a first portion (21) and a second portion (22), the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) being reciprocally arranged at an angle, the second modular connecting element (G2) being such that the first portion (21 ) thereof exhibits dimensions and a shape that are complementary to the shape of the second housing (2) such as to be positionable therein in an orientation that is such that the second portion (22) projects from the end of the band (N2) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the first housing (1) of the end portion of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and axially aligned with the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1); the conjoining element (G3) has a shape that is such a to be couplable with a relatively slidably fitting coupling, both to the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2), such that the first modular connecting element (G1 ), the conjoining element (G3) and the second modular connecting element (G2) can be reciprocally assembled and coupled such as to establish an interconnection between the end of the terminal band (N1 ) of the first guardrail (R1 ) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), and in that it comprises fixing means for fixing the first portion (1 1) of the first modular connecting element (G1 ) to the walls of the first housing (1), for fixing the first portion (21 ) of the second modular connecting element (G2) to the walls of the second housing (2), and for fixing the conjoining element (G3) respectively to both the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1 ) and to the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2). 2) The system of claim 1 , characterised in that it comprises a series of first housings (1 ) in a number corresponding to the number of undulations present in the terminal undulated band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1 ), each of which placed at an end portion of the face of the undulated band (N1 ) opposite the face which is facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a corresponding undulation of the undulated band (N1), a series of second housings (2) in a number corresponding to the number of undulations present in the initial undulated band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), each of which is located at an end portion of the undulated band (N2) opposite the face which is facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a corresponding undulation of the undulated band (N2), and a series of modular interconnecting groups (G) in a number corresponding to the minimum number of undulations of the undulations present in the bands (N1 , N2) of the two guardrails (R1 , R2), each of which groups (G) comprising: a first modular connecting element (G1) having a first portion (1 1) and a second portion (12) arranged at an angle to one another, positionable with a first portion (11) thereof in a corresponding housing (1) of the series of first housings (1) in such a way that the second portion (12) projects from the band (N1) and is orientated in a direction facing towards a corresponding second housing (2) of the series of the second housings (2); a second modular connecting element (G2) having a first portion (21) and a second portion (22) arranged at an angle to one another, positionable with a first portion (21) thereof in a corresponding housing (2) of the series of second housings (2) in such a way that the second portion (22) projects from the band (N2) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the first housing (1) and axially aligned with the second portion (12) of the corresponding first modular connecting element (G1), and a conjoining element (G3) couplable to the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and to the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) in such a way that each modular group thus-assembled can establish a corresponding interconnection between the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2).

3) The system of claim 2, characterised in that it comprises a covering and cladding element (4) couplable and fixable to the modular interconnecting groups (G) mounted and predisposed between the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2).

4) The system of claim 3, characterised in that the first modular connecting element (G1) of each modular group (G) is such that the first portion (11) thereof and the second portion (12) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape that is such as to comprise an intermediate portion (13) between the first portion (11) and the second portion (12), and in a single body with the first portion (11) and the second portion (12), which exhibits a curved tubular shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) are arranged at an angle with respect to one another, and the second modular connecting element (G2) of each modular group (G) is such that the first portion (21) thereof and the second portion (22) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (23) between the first portion (21) and the second portion (22), and in a single body with the first portion (21) and the second portion (22), which exhibits a curved tubular shape such that the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) are arranged at an angle to one another. 5) The system of claim 4, characterised in that the curved intermediate tubular portion (13) of the first modular connecting element (G1) exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) are arranged at an angle to one another such that the angle comprised between the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) is comprised between 120 degrees and 150 degrees, and the curved tubular intermediate portion (23) of the second modular connecting element (G2) exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) are arranged at an angle with respect to one another that is comprised between 120 degrees and 150 degrees.

6) The system of claim 3, characterised in that the first modular connecting element (G1) of each modular group (G) is such that the first portion (11) thereof and the second portion (12) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (130) which conjoins the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) and such that the second portion (12) is arranged at an angle with respect to the first portion (11), the intermediate portion (130) being conformed in such a way as to constitute a joint element such as to enable varying the angular position of the second portion (12) with respect to the first portion (11) and consequently vary the angle comprised between them, and in that the second modular connecting element (G2) of each modular interconnecting group (G) is such that the first portion (21) thereof and the second portion (22) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (230) which conjoins the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) and such that the second portion (22) is arranged at an angle with respect to the first portion (21), the intermediate portion (230) being conformed in such a way as to constitute a joint element such as to enable varying the angular position of the second portion (22) with respect to the first portion (21) and consequently vary the angle comprised between the second portion (22) and the first portion (21).

7) The system of any one of claims from 4 to 6, characterised in that the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) are internally hollow and in that the conjoining element (G3) exhibits a tubular shape that is complementary to the tubular shape of the second portions (12, 22) and such as to be inserted reciprocally slidingly between the second portions (12, 22).

8) The system of any one of claims from 4 to 6, characterised in that the conjoining element (G3) exhibits a tubular shape that is complementary to the tubular shape of the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the tubular shape of the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) and such that the conjoining element (G3) can be externally and reciprocally slidingly coupled to the second portions (12, 22).

9) The system of claim 7 or claim 8, characterised in that the tubular conjoining element (G3) exhibits a series of through-slots or holes (F) such as to enable, once coupled to the second portions (12, 22) and the relative position thereof defined with respect thereto, insertion of the fixing means for reciprocal fixing thereof.

Description:
AN INTERCONNECTING SYSTEM OF GUARDRAILS

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to the technical sector concerning road safety devices and systems used as barrier elements for passive containment internally of a road and/or carriageway of vehicles which skid or deviate from the normal motion trajectory thereof, in this way preventing these vehicles from encroaching onto the opposite carriageway or projecting beyond the carriageway.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PRIOR ART These devices and systems for road safety are commonly known by the term "guardrails".

As is known, guardrails comprise a series of uprights that are planted in the ground at a certain reciprocal distance and flanked at either side of a carriageway, and a series of undulated bands which are fixed to the uprights in such a way as to be consecutive to one another and form a continuous front of the containing barrier.

The undulated bands are made of a metal material, such as for example galvanised steel, and are designed such as to elastically absorb an eventual impact caused by a vehicle crashing against a guardrail following a skid. The undulated bands used for realising guardrails are designed in such a way as to provide various containing capacities of the impacts on the basis of their installed location.

Thus two-wave bands are known, which exhibit an undulated form, for example sinusoidal, having two "waves" facing towards the carriageway, once the band has been fixed to the relative uprights, and also three-wave bands are known, which also exhibit an undulated shape but having three "waves".

For example, the guardrails that must be used and installed at the sides of a carriageway crossing a bridge or a flyoever must be provided with undulated bands having a high containing capacity, greater for example than bands used for realising the guardrails by the flanks of a flat portion of a carriageway.

It can therefore occur that in a flat portion of carriageway a two-wave guardrail is used, but at the position where the carriageway encounters a bridge or a flyover the guardrails need to have a greater containing capacity, and therefore be provided with three-wave bands.

A problem arises relating to how to conjoin and interconnect the two types of guardrails, i.e. how to interconnect a terminal end of a band of guardrail flanking the final flat portion of the carriagway with the initial end of the band of guardrail flanking the portion of carriageway crossing the bridge or flyover.

In this case, the problem is caused by the differing shape and geometry of the two ends to be interconnected with one another.

There are also situations in which ends of two guardrail bands have to be interconnected where the bands have a same shape and geometry, for example being both of the same three-wave type, but are distanced and staggered from one another, or at differing heights from the terrain.

In these other particular solutions there exists too the problem of how to carry out the interconnection between the two distanced ends of the two guardrails. This type of problem (i.e. how to interconnect the terminal end of a band of a first guardrail to the initial end of a band of a second guardrail) is also present in all those cases in which it is necessary to interconnect guardrails that are located at particular zones, such as for example slip-roads, including on motorways, where there is a change of direction of the guardrail and also a change in the geometry of the bands that make up the guardrails.

At present the interconnection between the terminal end of a band of a first guardrail and the initial end of a band of a second guardrail is done using pressed metal elements, such as for example pressed metal sheets having predetermined shapes, geometries and profiles. In practice, by knowing the type of interconnection that is to be achieved, such as for example an interconnection between the terminal end of a two-wave band of a guardrail of the flat terminal portoin of a carriageway with the initial end of a three-wave band of a guardrail located on a bridge, or an interconnection between the ends of two three-wave bands which are however distanced from one another and/or staggered, first a pressed metal sheet is factory-prepared having a determined shape and profile corresponding to the space existing between the two terminal ends to be interconnected.

The pressed metal sheet will be provided, during the working step, with holes/slots at two relative opposite end edges which will have to coincide, once the metal sheet has been positioned between the two ends to be connected, with holes or slots present in the terminal ends of the bands, in order to enable insertion of fixing means.

Therefore the operators have to position the pressed metal sheet in the space existing between the two terminal ends of the bands of the two guardrails to be interconnected so that a first edge of the sheet is located at the end of the band of the first guardrail, and partially superposed thereto so that there is a correspondence between the relative slots/holes and, at the same time, the second edge of the pressed sheet is located at the end of the band of the second guardrail, and parially superposed thereto so that there is a correspondence between the relative slots/holes, in order then to proceed with the inserting of the fixing means in these slots/holes.

These operations are not at all simple, for various reasons.

In fact, very often the shape and form of the preformed metal sheeting do not correspond to the effective space and distance existing between the two ends of the bands of guardrail to be interconnected and further, once the sheet has been positioned, it often happens that there is not an adequate correspondence between the holes and slots present on a side of the sheet and the other in the terminal parts of the bands, for inserting the fixing means. In these situations, the operators are therefore forced to proceed with adapting operations on-site, which require time and are not easy to perform. SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The aim of the present invention is therefore to provide a new interconnecting system of guardrails which can obviate the above-cited problems and which enables carrying out the interconnection with simple and immediate operations.

The aim is obtained with a system for interconnecting guardrails according to claim 1.

Other advantageous characteristics of the system are set out in the various dependent claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The characteristics of the interconnecting system of guardrails of the invention are described in the following with reference to the appended tables of drawings, in which: - figure 1A illustrates, in a perspective view, the main characteristics of the interconnecting system of the invention applied in such a way as to realise an interconnection between the ends of two guardrails which are distanced from one another; in the figure the end of the terminal band of the first guardrail and the end of the initial band of the second guardrail have been illustrated as transparent in order better to highlight the characteristics of the disclosed system;

- figure 1 B is another perspective view of the view of figure 1A, but in this case the terminal band of the first guardrail and the initial band of the second guardrail are not transparent; - figure 2A illustrates, in a perspective view, a group of significant elements of the system, assembled to one another in a first embodiment;

- figures 2B and 2C are perspective views of significant elements of the system of the invention which, once assembled to one another, together form the group of elements of figure 2A;

- figure 3 is a frontal schematic view of a group of elements which together form the system of the invention according to a possible further embodiment thereof;

- figures 4A, 4B, AC illustrate, in respective schematic perspective views, the use of the system of the invention for interconnecting the end of the three- wave terminal band of a first guardrail with the end of the initial three-wave band of a second guardrail when the two guardrails to be interconnected are reciprocally located in different positions, orientations and at different distances;

- figure 5A illustrates, in a frontal view, a case in which the system of the invention has been used to interconnect two guardrails, both of the three- wave type, the ends of which are staggered and distanced, while figures 5B and 5C illustrate other characteristic elements of the system applied so as to complete the interconnecting operations of the two guardrails;

- figures 6A and 6B illustrate, according to relative frontal views, the use of the system of the invention in a situation in which it is necessary to carry out the interconnection between the distanced and staggered ends of two guardrails of different types, namely a first two-wave guardrail and a second three-wave guardrail.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

With reference to the tables of drawings (see in particular figure 1 A), reference (S) denotes the interconnecting system of guardrails according to the invention in its entirety.

The interconnecting system (S) of the present invention is constructed in such a way as to be applicable in any situation in which there is a need to carry out an interconnection between two guardrails (R1 , R2), of a same type or even of different types (e.g. two-wave or three-wave), each comprising waved bands mounted to one another consecutively and continuatively, which are predisposed along an edge of a carriageway with the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) being distanced from the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2).

By the term "distanced" it is meant that the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2) are distanced from one another and can be staggered in height with respect to one another and/or in depth with respect to the edge of the carriageway.

The interconnecting system (S) of the invention comprises: at least a first housing (1), at an end portion of a face of the undulated terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) opposite the face of the band facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (01) of the undulated band (N1) (see figure 1), at least a second housing (2), at an end portion of a face of the undulated initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2) opposite the face of the band facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a first undulation (02) of the undulated band (N2) (see figure 1A), and at least an interconnecting modular group (G) comprising a first modular connecting element (G1), a conjoining element (G3) and a second modular connecting element (G2).

The special characteristics of the system consist in the fact that: the first modular connecting element (G1) has a shape that is such as to exhibit a first portion (11) and a second portion (12), the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) being reciprocally arranged at an angle, the first modular connecting element (G1) being such that the first portion (11) thereof exhibits dimensions and a shape that are complementary to a shape of the first housing (1) such as to be positionable therein with an orientation that is such that the second portion (12) projects from the end of the band (N1) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the second housing (2) of the end portion of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), and that the second modular connecting element (G2) has a shape that is such as to exhibit a first portion (21) and a second portion (22), the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) being reciprocally arranged at an angle, the second modular connecting element (G2) being such that the first portion (21) thereof exhibits dimensions and a shape that are complementary to the shape of the second housing (2) such as to be positionable therein in an orientation that is such that the second portion (22) projects from the end of the band (N2) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the first housing (1) of the end portion of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and axially aligned With the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1); and that the modular conjoining element has a shape that is such a to be couplable with a relatively slidably fitting coupling, both to the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2).

With these special characteristics of shape and structure of the modular connecting elements of the modular interconnecting group (G), the first modular connecting element (G1), the conjoining element (G3) and the second modular connecting element (G2) can be reciprocally assembled and coupled such as to establish an interconnection between the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), independently of the type of the two guardrails to be conjoined and independently of the reciprocal orientation of the two ends to be inter-connected.

In fact, as clearly illustrated in figures from 4A to 4C and figure 6A, owing to the assemblage versatility thereof the modular interconnecting group (G) can be used for interconnecting the ends of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2) including when the two ends are distanced from one another at different distances and are also staggered over a height and/or depth that are different with respect to the edge of the carriageway. It will be sufficient to adjust the orientation with which both the first portion (11) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the first portion (21 ) of the second modular connecting element (G2) are predisposed respectively in the first housing (1) and the second housing (2), so that the relative second portions (12, 22) are axially aligned with one another and then proceed to coupling the modular connecting element (G3) with the second portions (12, 22).

Owing to the fact that the modular connecting element (G3) is couplable to the second portions (12, 22) with relative slidability, it is therefore possible to establish a continuous interconnection between the two ends of the terminal band (N1 ) and the initial band (N2) of the two guardrails.

This interconnection is in fact obtained and defined by the coupling of the first modular connecting element (G1) with the first housing (1) (by means of the relative first portion (11)) , by the coupling of the second modular connecting element (G2) with the second housing (2) (by means of the relative first portion (21)) and by the assembly and reciprocal connecting of the first modular connecting element (G1) with the second modular connecting element (G2) by means of the second modular conjoining element (G3) slidingly couplable to the second portions (12, 22) of the two modular connecting elements (G1 , G2). Lastly, the interconnecting system (S) proposed by the invention comprises fixing means for fixing the first portion (11) of the first modular connecting element (G1) to the walls of the first housing (1), for fixing the first portion (21) of the second modular connecting element (G2) to the walls of the second housing (2), and for fixing the conjoining element (G3) respectively to both the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and to the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2).

Other characteristics of the interconnecting system (S) of the invention are set out in the following.

The system (S) will comprise a number of modular interconnecting groups (G) at least corresponding to the minimum number of waves present in the two guardrails and a relative number of first (1) and second (2) housings corresponding to the number of waves present in the respective undulated bands of the two guardrails to be interconnected.

In particular, the system (S) can comprise: a series of first housings (1) in a number corresponding to the number of undulations present in the terminal undulated band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1), each of which placed at an end portion of the face of the undulated band (N1) opposite the face which is facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a corresponding undulation of the undulated band (N1), and a series of second housings (2) in a number corresponding to the number of undulations present in the initial undulated band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2), each of which is located at an end portion of the undulated band (N2) opposite the face which is facing towards the carriageway, and delimited by a portion of the concave surface of a corresponding undulation of the undulated band (N2).

Independently of the type of the two bands of the two guardrails, the distanced ends of which are to be interconnected, the system (S) includes the use of a series of modular interconnecting groups (G) in a number corresponding to the minimum number of undulations of the undulations present in the bands (N1 , N2) of the two guardrails (R1 , R2).

Each of the modular interconnecting groups (G) comprises: a first modular connecting element (G1) having a first portion (11 ) and a second portion (12) arranged at an angle to one another, positionable with a first portion (11) thereof in a corresponding housing (1 ) of the series of first housings (1) in such a way that the second portion (12) projects from the band (N1) and is orientated in a direction facing towards a corresponding second housing (2) of the series of the second housings (2); a second modular connecting element (G2) having a first portion (21) and a second portion (22) arranged at an angle to one another, positionable with a first portion (21) thereof in a corresponding housing (2) of the series of second housings (2) in such a way that the second portion (22) projects from the band (N2) and is orientated in a direction facing towards the first housing (1) and axially aligned with the second portion (12) of the corresponding first modular connecting element (G1 ), and a conjoining element (G3) couplable to the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and to the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) in such a way that each modular group thus-assembled can establish a corresponding interconnection between the end of the terminal band (N1) of the first guardrail (R1) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2).

For example, in the situations illustrated in figures from 4A to 4C, the two bands the ends of which are distanced and which have to be interconnected are both of the three-wave type; in this case the system (S) will include three first housings (1) each delimited by walls of a respective wave of the three waves of the first band (N1), three second housings (2), each delimited by walls of a respective wave of the three waves of the second band (N2), and three modular interoconnecting groups (G), each of which comprising a first modular interconnecting element (G1), a second modular connecting element (G2) and a connecting element (G3), assemblage to one another and interconnectable as described herein above.

In a case in which, on the other hand, the two two bands the ends of which are distanced and which have to be interconnected are of different type, for example the first bnd (N1 ) is two-wave and the second band (N2) is three- wave, as illustrated in figures 6A and 6B, the system will include the use of two modular interconnecting groups (G), assembled to one another and interconnectable as described herein above. The system (S) of the invention further comprises a covering and cladding element (4) couplable and fixable to the modular interconnecting groups (G) once mounted and predisposed between the end of the terminal band (N1 ) of the first guardrail (R1 ) and the end of the initial band (N2) of the second guardrail (R2) (see for example figures from 5A to 5C, and 6B). This covering and cladding element (4) can for example be constituted by an undulated metal sheet that is fixed to the modular groups (G) predisposed between the two ends of the bands.

The undulated sheet will have a waved shape that is already known a priori, as the dimensions of the modular connecting elements (G1 , G2, G3) are already known, which are used for the assembly of the modular interconnecting group (G) between the two ends of the two bands.

At the moment of installation and fixing of the waved metal sheet, vertical cutting operations might be carried out in the workplace, which operations are simple and are aimed at adapting the metal sheet to the effective distance between the ends of the two bands to be interconnected.

In the case illustrated in figures 6A and 6B, relative, as mentioned above, to the interconnection between the ends of two bands of different type (the first band being of the two-wave type and the second band being of the three-wave type), the system includes the use of two modular interconnecting groups (G). With the aim of giving greater sturdiness to the interconnection, and also facilitating the application of the covering and cladding element (4), the system (S) can include the use of a single second modular interconnecting element (G2) to be mounted at the third of the second housings (2) of the second band (N2) that is left free. In this way the covering and cladding element (4) can be fixed to the two modular interconnecting groups (G) predisposed and mounted between the two ends and also fixed to the single second modular connecting element (G2). Figures from 2A to 2C illustrate a first embodiment of the modular interconnecting groups (G) and the relative modular connecting elements (G1 , G2, G3).

In this embodiment the first modular connecting element (G1 ) of each modular group (G) is such that the first portion (11) thereof and the second portion (12) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape that is such as to comprise an intermediate portion (13) between the first portion (11) and the second portion (12), and in a single body with the first portion (11) and the second portion (12), which exhibits a curved tubular shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) are arranged at an angle with respect to one another. Correspondingly, the second modular connecting element (G2) of each modular interconnecting group (G) is such that the first portion (21) thereof and the second portion (22) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (23) between the first portion (21) and the second portion (22), and in a single body with the first portion (21) and the second portion (22), which exhibits a curved tubular shape such that the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) are arranged at an angle to one another.

In particular, the curved intermediate tubular portion (13) of the first modular connecting element (G1) exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) are arranged at an angle to one another such that the angle comprised between the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) is comprised between 120 degrees and 150 degrees.

The curved intermediate tubular portion (13) of the first modular connecting element (G1) preferably exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) are reciprocally arranged at an angle of 135 degrees.

Correspondingly, the curved tubular intermediate portion (23) of the second modular connecting element (G2) exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) are arranged at an angle with respect to one another that is comprised between 120 degrees and 150 degrees.

In this case too, the curved intermediate tubular portion (13) of the first modular connecting element (G1) preferably exhibits a curved shape such that the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) of the second modular connecting element (G2) are reciprocally arranged at an angle of 135 degrees.

Figure 3, on the other hand, illustrates a further possible embodiment of the modular interconnecting groups (G) and the relative modular connecting elements. In this case, the first modular connecting element (G1) of each modular interconnecting group (G) is such that the first portion (11) thereof and the second portion (12) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (130) which conjoins the first portion (11) and the second portion (12) and such that the second portion (12) is arranged at an angle with respect to the first portion (11), the intermediate portion (130) being conformed in such a way as to constitute a joint element such as to enable varying the angular position of the second portion (12) with respect to the first portion (11) and consequently vary the angle comprised between them. For example, the third intermediate portion (130) can be conformed in such a way as to be angularly extensible or abbreviable, accordion-like; or, alternatively, to be conformed as a hinge having a degree of freedom that enables angular rotation of the second portion (12) with respect to the first portion (11). Corespondingly, the second modular connecting element (G2) of each modular interconnecting group (G) is such that the first portion (21) thereof and the second portion (22) thereof exhibit a straight tubular shape and such as to comprise an intermediate portion (230) which conjoins the first portion (21) and the second portion (22) and such that the second portion (22) is arranged at an angle with respect to the first portion (21), the intermediate portion (230) being conformed in such a way as to constitute a joint element such as to enable varying the angular position of the second portion (22) with respect to the first portion (21) and consequently vary the angle comprised between the second portion (22) and the first portion (21).

For example, the third intermediate portion (230) can be conformed in such a way as to be angularly elongated or shortened, accordion-like; or, alternatively, to be conformed as a hinge having a degree of freedom that enables angular rotation of the second portion (22) with respect to the first portion (21).

Lastly, the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) can be designed so as to be internally hollow and consequently the conjoining element (G3) exhibits a tubular shape that is complementary to the tubular shape of the second portions (12, 22) and such as to be inserted reciprocally slidingly between the second portions (12, 22).

Alternatively, the modular conjoining element (G3) can be designed so as to exhibit a tubular shape that is complementary to the tubular shape of the second portion (12) of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the tubular shape of the second portion (22) of the second modular connecting element (G2) and such that the conjoining element (G3) can be externally and reciprocally slidingly coupled to the second portions (12, 22).

In any case, in both cases the modular conjoining element (G3) exhibits a series of through-slots or holes (F) such as to enable, once coupled to the second portions (12, 22) respectively of the first modular connecting element (G1) and the second modular connecting element (G2) and defined by the relative position thereof with respect thereto, the insertion of the fixing means for reciprocal fixing thereof.