INTRO: Singapore Expo Centre

April 14-16

SINGAPORE is the host city for the Exporail (Asia) 99 trade exhibition, being staged on April 14-16 at the Singapore Expo Centre. Organised by Interfama Brooks Exhibitions, the show is taking place at the same venue as the 1999 International Symposium on Public Transit for the 21st Century, which is being arranged by the Institution of Engineers, Singapore, and the Centre for Transportation Research at the National University of Singapore.

With Kowloon - Canton Railway placing orders last month for rolling stock and train control for its ambitious WestRail project, there are signs that the Asian market may be reviving. Progress is being made with the Taipei - Kaohsiung high speed line in Taiwan, where work on the Kaohsiung metro is to start in 2001. After years of delay in Bangkok, the Blue line metro is under construction, while trial running is well under way on the Tanayong light metro. State Railway of Thailand is implementing a programme of investments (p235), while in China demand for transport continues to foster new main line and metro construction programmes.

Chinese rolling stock companies are now in the export business, the latest products being metro cars for Tehran from Changchun Car Works. Two Chinese suppliers will be exhibiting at Exporail (Asia) 99: Qiqihar Rolling Stock Works and Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Works. Bombardier Transportation and Patentes Talgo of Spain will be among the other major rolling stock builders at the event.

Reflecting its success in Singapore with contracts to supply pantographs for the North East line trains and the conductor rail system for the 6 km MRT extension from Tanah Merah to Changi airport, Brecknell Willis will be one of several car component suppliers. Other component specialists present will include Semperit of Austria, Metalastik Dunlop and Dunlop Precision Rubber, which will be exhibiting Pyroflex, a fire-safe elastomer for safety critical applications such as door seals. Low-smoke cables and similar products will be on the stand of Huber & Suhner, while SAFT of France will be displaying its latest battery products.

Westinghouse Signals has won a £10m contract to supply signalling and train control for Singapore MRT’s Changi extension, and sister company Westinghouse Brakes is supplying platform screen doors. Both companies are part of the BTR Rail group, which will have a display forming part of Britain’s Railway Industry Association exhibit. Westinghouse Signals will be promoting its Westrace safety processor and moving block transmission-based signalling. Australia’s Foxboro Transportation Systems will be featuring its expertise in train control, and other Australian suppliers will be represented on the stand of Australian Railway Industry Corp.

Suppliers of permanent way equipment will be prominent at Exporail, with exhibits by Getzner Werkstoffe of Austria, British Steel Track Products, Cogifer and Allevard Stedef of France, Ortec and Phoenix of Germany, Schwihag of Switzerland, and Tiflex, R Bance and Smiths Industries Hydraulics from Britain. The Pandrol Rail Fastenings display will feature the Vipa direct fixation track support system designed to reduce noise and vibration (front cover), and the Double Fastclip assembly which will be installed on the slab track on Singapore’s North East line. Also on display will be a monobloc concrete sleeper fitted with the Pandrol Fastclip Type FC preassembled rail fastening system to be installed on East Japan Railway’s extension of the Yamagata mini-shinkansen, together with an FD Fastclip for use on less busy lines.

Supplier of vacuum excavators Disab Vacuum Technology of Sweden will also have a stand. Training businesses MTR Training and Rail Training International have booked space, as has Power Magnetics & Electronic Systems. Other suppliers at the show will include Proceco Ltd from Canada, overhead wire specialist Felten & Guilleaume of K