by Tiana May
15 Nov 2022
The UK Department for Transport (DfT) is funding a series of projects to advance the future of Britain’s rail network.
In partnership with Innovate UK, the DfT has awarded more than 5 million GBP in grants to 24 innovators through the First of a Kind (FOAK) 2022 competition.
This funding will contribute to new concepts that aim to transform and further decarbonise rail travel.
“The UK has a long history of leading the way in railway innovation and the First of a Kind competition is getting the great brains of today to create the trains of tomorrow.
“Through millions of pounds worth of Government funding, we are breathing life into ideas that will revolutionise our railways and make them greener than ever before.
“This is just the beginning and, as Transport Secretary, I am determined to support British innovation and create a cutting edge, green rail industry that delivers even more benefits for passengers and freight.”
Supported by this DfT funding, Varamis will work with DHL and Fedex to repurpose former passenger carriages to create high-speed, parcel delivery services.
Meanwhile, Echion Technologies is developing batteries that can charge using overhead wires and then operate on unelectrified section of track. This will enable the vehicles to run as ‘self-charging trains.’
In addition, Thales Ground Transportation Systems has developed new sensors to detect people approaching tracks and give an early warning and an accurate location to staff. This technology could reduce disruption and act as suicide intervention, while also preventing trespassers such as protestors.
“The innovations funded though this competition will help to deliver a greener, lower-emissions railway carrying increasingly higher proportions of the UK’s freight.
“Delivered by Innovate UK, on behalf of the Department for Transport through the Small Business Research Initiative, it seeks the best and brightest ideas.
“Companies from all over the UK have demonstrated the quality of their innovations in previous rounds of this scheme. Now we will support even more innovations to help deliver a greener railway that benefits passengers, employees and customers for rail freight.”
Other winning projects include automatic systems that detect and stop track flooding, electric drivetrains that replace polluting diesel engines, and technology to instantly relay track information to improve safety.
The Nanning-Chongzuo section of Nanning-Pingxiang high-speed rail line went into operation in China on 5 December.
The electrification of Austria's Rosenthalbahn and modernisation of its infrastructure have been completed.
Cottbusverkehr GmbH (CV) has exercised the option to to order an additional 15 trams from Škoda Group for the city of Cottbus, Germany.
Los Angeles Metro has approved route for the Eastside Transit Corridor Phase 2 Project, which will extend the Metro L (Gold) light rail line.
Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has completed the modernisation of Southern Railway's 75 Class 377/4 Electrostar trains.
The Société de transport de Montréal (STM) has launched a call for tenders to construct the Blue line metro extension in Montréal, Quebec.
Midlands Connect has unveiled plans to deliver 1.5 billion GBP in infrastructure improvements to enhance east-west rail connections in the UK.
Alstom and Air Products have signed an MoU to accelerate the deployment of hydrogen trains in the Czech Republic.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation has applied to the US Federal Railroad Administration for $108m of funding.
Singapore's Land Transport Authority (LTA) has awarded two civil contracts for the Cross Island Line project.
Advanced utility work has begun on the first segment of the East San Fernando Valley light rail project in Los Angeles County.
DB has put its latest ICE generation train - the ICE 3neo - into service ahead of schedule thanks to a speedy delivery by Siemens Mobility.
Alstom has signed a contract with Irish Rail (IÉ) to supply an additional 18 five-car X’trapolis trains for the DART+ network.
CAF is to supply additional LRV and trams to the cities of Bonn and Budapest after the cities’ operators took up options for additional units.
Network Rail has launched an audio guide to help blind and partially sighted people navigate their way around Bristol Temple Meads Station.
Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario has selected the development partner for the Scarborough Subway Extension's SRS contract.
Network Rail has installed 37 miles of electric wires between Church Fenton and Colton Junction as part of the Transpennine Route Upgrade.
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has approved the introduction of Grand Union Trains between London, Cardiff and South West Wales from 2024.
The City of Calgary has unveiled a mock-up of the new low-floor Light Rail Vehicle (LRV) that will operate on its Green Line.
Huw Merriman MP, Minister of State at the Department for Transport, will give a keynote address at this year’s Rail Industry Forum.
Adif is trialling the use of synthetic sleepers to assess whether they have the potential to become a viable alternative to wooden sleepers.
Kazakhstan Railways and Alstom have announced an expansion of their partnership with the signing of a new cooperation agreement.
In partnership with ProRail and Lineas, Alstom has demonstrated the highest grade of automation on an autonomous shunting locomotive.
Ireland's Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan has secured approval for IÉ to order 90 battery-electric train carriages from Alstom this year.
CRRC Tangshan has exported the first 46 broad-gauge passenger trains to Pakistan along with 169 cases of spare parts.
Hitachi Rail has been chosen to equip digital bi-standard cab signalling technology on SNCF and Eurostar trains.
Stadler has signed an agreement with the VR Group to supply 20 single-decker FLIRT electric multiple units.
The first section of the Milan Metro M4 line has begun passenger service following the inauguration of six stations.
Track laying work on the extension of Lyon Metro’s line B from Oullins to Saint-Genis-Laval has been completed.
A John Holland, CPB Contractors (CPB) and Ghella joint venture has been awarded Sydney Metro West’s eastern tunnelling contract.
RSN is continuing to provide rail opportunities for their exhibitors and visitors, with a huge range of content announced for 6th July 2023.
Deutsche Bahn and the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania plan to introduce battery trains onto the Warnow II network.
A consortium led by Rizzani De Eccher will construct a rail connection between the Mestre-Trieste line and Venice Marco Polo airport.
Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth has visited the new trains currently undergoing testing for the Glasgow Subway in Scotland.
Alstom has signed a new contract with Panama Metro (MPSA) to provide maintenance for Line 2’s rolling stock, signalling and power supply system.
HS2’s tunnel boring machine (TBM) Dorothy has begun its second one-mile tunnel bore under Long Itchington Wood in Warwickshire.
GB Railfreight (GBRf) has invested 4.7 million GBP in a new maintenance depot in Peterborough alongside the UK's East Coast Mainline.
Centralny Port Komunikacyjny (CPK) has selected several consortiums to design Poland's first high-speed railway line.
HS2 's Euston site construction team Mace Dragados Joint Venture is trialling a hydrogen fuel cell to power a fully electric JCB telehandler.
A Hitachi Rail consortium will design and deliver ERTMS digital signalling on 1,885km of rail network across central and northern Italy.
Nestlé Waters will become the first company in Europe to operate a hydrogen-powered freight train with a solution from Alstom and ENGIE.
As part of the Railway Interior Innovation Summit 2022, leaders shared their thoughts on major issues facing the railway interiors industry.
Norfolk Southern Railway Company (NSRC) will purchase all of the Cincinnati Southern Railway’s (CSR) assets for 1.62 billion USD.
This weekend the first of MTR's new trains will enter passenger service on Hong Kong’s Kwun Tong Line as part of its asset renewal project.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) will upgrade its routes between Hamburg-Berlin and Emmerich-Oberhausen for a future high-performance network.
In his November column Jonn Elldge considers what the recent Budget means for the rail sector in terms of investment in projects such as HS2.
Alstom has signed a framework agreement with Egypt’s National Authority of Tunnels to design, build and maintain the Cairo Metro Line 6.
Stadler will supply Transports publics de la région lausannoise 10 TRAMLINK trams. The contract includes the supply of spare parts and tools.
Amtrak is advancing a major infrastructure project to replace the 116-year-old Susquehanna River Rail Bridge in Havre de Grace Maryland.
Stadler will supply nine FLIRT XL vehicles to DB Regio for cross-border traffic between Germany and Poland on the Berlin–Szczecin route.
Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx have contracted Hitachi Rail's Connect 6ix consortium to deliver the Ontario Line RSSOM package.
The South Florida Regional Transportation Authority will begin training and testing of Tri-Rail services at MiamiCentral Station.
VIA Rail has awarded contracts to modernise its maintenance centres in Toronto and Montréal for its Corridor Fleet Replacement Program.
Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has contracted Alstom to supply 312 metro cars for the Delhi Metro Phase IV expansion.
Hitachi Rail will deliver Electrical & Mechanical Systems and Track Works for the new railway from Solis to Malolos in the Philippines.
The FRA has published a list of priority projects to advance the development of the Northeast Corridor (NEC).
Transport for London (TfL) has launched a trial of a new bridging device, a ramp specifically designed for step-free stations.
The first of Avanti West Coast's new fleet of Hitachi bi-mode trains has begun dynamic testing at Network Rail’s RIDC.
Network Rail has announced that major improvement works are set to take place on the Bakerloo and London Overground lines.
WMATA has celebrated the opening of the Silver Line Extension, which has added six new stations and 11.4 miles of Metrorail track.
Alstom has been awarded a contract to supply the signalling systems for the Metro do Porto yellow line extension in Porto, Portugal.
Construction work is now underway at Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG) airport for line 17 of the Grand Paris Express.
CRRC Puzhen has delivered the first train for the Chuzhou-Nanjing intercity railway to the Xiangguan Depot in Chuzhou, China.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) has commissioned Alstom and Siemens to each develop a vehicle concept for the new high-speed ICE trains in Germany.
Stadler has presented the 18 double-decker KISS trains that will operate between Hamburg, Lübeck and Travemünde from January 2023.
Rolling Stock Networking is delighted to announce that the conference at RSN will be delivered by Rail Partners, on 6 July 2023 in Derby, UK.
Alstom has published a study entitled, 'The Role of Urban Rail in Sustainable Africa,' with EY Climate Change and Sustainability Services.
Alstom has been selected to manufacture and commission 78 metro coaches to operate on Phase II of the Chennai Metro in India.
Porterbrook has announced that the first 25 new JNA-X Box Wagons have arrived in the UK and are now on lease with GB Railfreight (GBRf).
California High-Speed Rail Authority has selected AECOM's JV for programme management support on the California High-Speed Rail project.
Siemens Mobility will install its digital Trainguard MT CBTC solution on lines U2 and U4 of the Hamburg subway.
3 Liberec trams are undergoing a major overhaul at the Škoda production site in Martinov as part of a tender for the repair of six T3 units.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) has announced that driver training is now underway on the new Wendlingen–Ulm line between Stuttgart and Munich in preparation for its commiss...
Transport for Wales has installed the first electrical lines on the Core Valley Lines to power the new South Wales Metro.
Metrolink's Burbank Junction Speed Improvement Project has commenced at Burbank-Downtown Station in California.
CAF's LeadMind platform is improving services on the Serco Caledonian Mk5 Sleeper fleet by providing real-time remote monitoring alerts.
A Thales-led NS2F consortium is developing an efficient and low-cost digital rail signalling and network operation system.
Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx have awarded a 6bn CAD contract to Ontario Transit Group for the Ontario Line South Civil package.
In 2022, Deutsche Bahn (DB) has been converting the lighting at around 1,000 train stations to energy-efficient sources such as LEDs.
Network Rail has installed the first electric wires between Manchester and Stalybridge as part of the Transpennine Route Upgrade.
Alstom has opened an expanded rolling stock plant in Taubaté, São Paulo, strengthening the company's presence in Brazil.
The latest European Train Control System (ETCS) is being fitted to a DB Cargo UK freight locomotive for the East Coast Digital Programme.
Work is underway to deliver the next phase of enhancements to the power supply that will support Scotland's electrified rail network.
Arriva Netherlands has announced that it will start operating its first overnight trains from Maastricht to Schiphol on 16 December.
The Egyptian government has awarded a contract to Deutsche Bahn (DB) to operate Egypt's first high-speed rail network.
Azienda Trasporti Milanesi (ATM) has awarded a framework agreement to Hitachi Rail to manufacture the new trains for the Milan Metro.
Eiropas Dzelzceļa līnijas has signed a construction design agreement with RERE INECO for 16 regional stations for Rail Baltica in Latvia.
Renfe plans to execute the purchase option for 101 additional Cercanías and Media Distancia trains before the end of this year.
Rolling Stock Networking (RSN), taking place on 6 July 2023 in Derby, UK, is delighted to announce Railway-News as Media Partner.
Icomera and GoMedia chat to us about Visor, their accessibility product that allows the blind and visually impaired to navigate stations independently.
The NSW Government is investing 180m AUD to modernise the network at Central Station’s Grand Concourse in Sydney to accomodate more trains.
Société du Grand Paris has announced that the first catenaries are being installed for the Paris Métro line 15 South.
AECOM's SJTP will provide engineering and project management services with STV Incorporated for the GCL Light Rail project in New Jersey.
We've split our fourth issue of the Railway-News magazine 2022 into three: Rolling Stock, Data & Monitoring and Track & Infrastructure.
We've split our fourth issue of the Railway-News magazine 2022 into three: Track & Infrastructure, Data & Monitoring and Rolling Stock.
We've split our fourth issue of the Railway-News magazine 2022 into three: Data & Monitoring, Track & Infrastructure and Rolling Stock.
Northern has completed its first ‘Intelligent Train,’ installing technology such as LIDAR horizon scanning cameras on a Class 150 unit.
Pennsylvania is investing 3.7 million USD to enable Amtrak passenger rail services to run between Scranton and New York City.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) has announced that the Central Subway will open in San Francisco on 19 November.
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