Ricardo Rail gets approval for On-Track Machines London Underground

The Kirow KRC250 Rail Crane and Switch Tilting wagons are accepted for deployment for maintenance on the London Underground. The official approval follows after five years’ work of Ricardo Rail to demonstrate the machines meet the requirements of the London Underground standard for On-Track Machines.

The approval enables deployment of the On-Track Machines, which will help accelerate track replacement works on London’s Metropolitan, Circle, District and Hammersmith and City Lines. These four lines are also known as the ‘Sub Surface Lines’ (SSL) as much of these routes operate above ground towards London’s outer suburbs.

Design modifications

Although switch tilting wagons have operated on the UK national network for several years, various design modifications were required for a model that must fit within the tighter confines of the SSL network. A key challenge was that the wagons needed to be approved for use on both the national and London Underground networks.

The project began in April 2015 with Ricardo’s teams defining the scope of the project, working with London Underground and their client Kirow Ardelt, manufacturer of the On-Track Machines and based in Leipzig. Once the requirements were fully understood by all parties, the design teams developed the specific changes required for the underframe and spine of the switch tilting wagon.

Technical requirements

As each design was developed, experts compiled the engineering submissions that would be required to demonstrate compliance with both Network Rail Plant Acceptance standards as well as London Underground standards and their Technical Requirements Specification.

These submissions were put to Ricardo Certification, an accredited independent business within the Ricardo group, who managed the sign off process with London Underground.

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Author: Esther Geerts

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