Germany: Robel, Linsinger and SRT presented their new track maintenance vehicles – Romill Urban E³, MG11 H₂, Vulcano Heavy and Vulcano Light – at the 28th International Exhibition for Track Technology (iaf) in Munster.
Romill Urban E³ rail milling machine was introduced by Robel. The three-car train has been developed jointly with Schweerbau International, which designed the patented climb milling process and polishing systems, and Vogel & Plotscher, which supplied the measuring equipment.
The machine was constructed in order to suit the narrowest subway tunnels, street level tracks and elevated track systems. Romill Urban E³ consists of 3 parts: a driver’s cab with three Li-Ion batteries providing a one-hour power reserve, a rail-milling machine with a chip box and a driver’s cab with a Tier 4 diesel engine of 400 kW power, that acts as a quick charger (charging batteries up to 90% in around 90 min), range extender and back-up power supply. With its high-capacity battery, the hybrid drive system allows for up to 3 hours of operations. In order to get an accurate rail profile the milling system of the train consists of a 600 mm milling head with 14 cassettes each of which can hold 18 tungsten carbide milling tools. The vehicle will be shipped to Plasser American in Florida where it is due to arrive in August for operation on North American metro networks.
Romill Urban E3 at the iaf exhibition in Munster, Germany. Source: muensterschezeitung.de
The prototype of another track machine, MG11 H2 track milling machine, was unveiled at the exhibition by Linsinger. After 3 years of development, the world’s first hydrogen-powered track milling machine is ready to undergo tests in two European metro systems during July and August. The four-axle machine is around 30 m long and weighs 38.1 t. The MG11 H2 has a top speed of 60 km/h. Hydrogen storage tanks, which exist on board supply a 230 kW fuel cell, which converts hydrogen into electricity with help of electrolysis. Linsinger declares, that one hydrogen tank load is enough for working more than one full shift, including travelling to and back. The refuelling takes up to 30 minutes. At the back part of the machine there are 240 kW batteries.
The Linsinger MG11 hydrogen milling track machine at the iaf exhibition in Munster, Germany. Source: railwaygazette.com
As Linsinger’s CEO Gunter Holleis says Japan got “very interested” in the potential offered by hydrogen for infrastructure maintenance machines and is considering the MG11 H2 order.
Two types of modular grinding trains were presented by SRT from Italy: the Vulcano Heavy and the Vulcano Light. The first one consists of 4 different types of cars coupled together: a pilot grinding module, an intermediate grinding module, a tank module, and a service module. It is available in scalable configurations from 22 to 96 grinding stones. According to SRT, this track machines are able to operate productively both on high-speed and metro lines. The rail grinder itself is fitted adjustable-angle stones with high abrasion capacity. Vulcano Heavy constantly controls the grinding process with equipped measuring systems and includes real-time performance monitoring technologies.
The Vulcano 34M rail grinder. Source: Salcef Group, youtube.com
The Vulcano Light is called this way because it has a small gauge that allows it to operate on metro lines. The machine is a self-propelled vehicle that offers high performance in track and turnout profiling, enables track geometry diagnostics and ultrasonic control. It is available with 10 and 24 grinding stones. The first 10-stone Vulcan Light machine has been delivered to the new Line 3 of Riyadh Metro in Saudi Arabia.
The Vulcano 10M rail grinder. Source: Salcef Group, youtube.com
Both track machines are authorised for commissioning on Italian National Railway Infrastructure by the Italian National Railway Safety Authority (ANSF) and can circulate without limitations as part of a train on the whole Italian railway network, at a speed of 100 km/h.