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MATISA’s new Track Renewal Train P95 in the UK

MATISA’s new Track Renewal Train P95 in the UK

01/03/2011 | Channel: Infrastructure

High output track renewal systems, known in the industry as TRS, have been used on the UK rail network for many years. Currently there are four different systems composed of different units, depending on the type of work that has to be undertaken. The latest system, TRS 4, will include the second P95 Track Renewal Train (TRT) in the country, manufactured by the Swiss company MATISA Materiel Industriel SA

The MATISA P95 Track Renewal Train is quite similar to the first one, delivered in 2005 and currently working in TRS 2, but this new consist has been implemented with some improvements. Based on experience operating the previous version, equipment such as rail guards, rail pullers, fastening brushes and rail transfer clamps have been added or improved.

Rail transfer clamps
As many of Railway Strategies’ readers might know, a TRT is quite a complex machine. The core of the consist is composed of six different wagons with a total length of 140m, all interconnected but each processing different phases leading to the removal of old rails and sleepers and the relaying of new units in a one continuous process. At the request of Network Rail, the rail transfer clamps mentioned earlier have been implemented on the new P95 by MATISA in order to transfer the old rail, initially placed in the six or four-foot, to the cess. This is to allow an easy pick up at a later stage. Equipped with two Deutz 2015 400kW engines, powering 16 axles, the work output is at an average of 350m/h.

Excess ballast
During the track renewal process the amount of ballast in place before the renewal action can be quite large. This might lead to ballast excess, causing the new track to be laid higher than before and creating some clearance issues, particularly in areas where there are overhead electrified lines. Additionally, that excess of ballast might create large ballast shoulders, not always easy to deal with in terms of rail manipulation.

With possession time reduction becoming more and more a key factor in the track
maintenance business, solutions had to be found to enable the treatment of the excess ballast without involving additional parties in the tightly planned renewal process. With the conception of the new P95 Track Renewal Train, MATISA, together with Network Rail have developed an additional ballast transfer unit named D75.

Based on an existing integrated system currently used on the MATISA C75 (but
without the ballast screening) operating in Italy, Belgium, Netherland and Spain, the new unit had to be redesigned for the UK due to the specific W6A gauge. The unit has been developed to be coupled to the Track Renewal Train in order to lower the track down to an excavation level of 270mm below actual sleeper bottom, after relaying. Additionally, equipped with its own power unit, the D75 can also be used independently, leaving the option to work where track renewal is not necessarily needed and therefore reducing maintenance costs.

Equipped with two Deutz 2015 400kW engines to be used in turns, this plant has an output of 500m3/h.

Vacuum machine
Further development of the working process involves the integration of a VM 80 TRS vacuum machine in the TRT. This is to prepare a cutter bar hole allowing the excavating chain of the D75 to be placed and start its track lowering operation without the use of an external and independent road rail excavator.

Moving factory
The whole consist including D75 and VM 80 TRS brings the total length to an impressive 190m for a total weight of nearly 600 tons. With the addition of up to 20 sleeper wagons, feeding the machine with new sleepers, this moving factory can reach an overall length of nearly 600m!

The feeding of new sleepers is provided by three gantry cranes of two different types: two PMP units transferring the sleepers through the length of the machine at an astonishing 18kph (11mph) carrying 24 sleepers each, and one P2RL gantry, rotating two sets of six sleepers simultaneously.

This impressive machine left MATISA’s Swiss factory on Monday 17th January and arrived in the UK on Tuesday 25th at the High Marnham test site. There it will be commissioned by MATISA’s dedicated team and ACJV operators under the supervision of Network Rail’s High Output team, over the next few months.

For further information, please contact Roger Grossniklaus at:
Tel: 01724 877 000
Email: matisa@matisa.co.uk
Web: www.matisa.ch