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IÉ to install hybrid train protection

06 Mar 2019

IRELAND: Following a competitive tendering process, Iarnród Éireann has selected the Turas joint venture of CPC Project Services, Deutsche Bahn and Egis as Delivery Partner to assist with the introduction of a new train protection system across its 1 600 mm gauge network over the next seven years.

The new TPS will be a hybrid system based on ETCS Level 1 but incorporating elements of IÉ’s existing Continuous Automatic Warning System and ATP technology. It is intended to provide an automatic train stop function, together with onboard supervision of train speeds and enforce adherence to any speed restrictions.

As Delivery Partner, Turas will provide a range of consultancy and technical services to IÉ, including project and programme management, systems integration and safety case management. CPC Programme Manager Tim Cooper said the appointment ‘marks an important milestone for CPC as we seek to become a key supplier to the European rail sector’.

At present, IÉ main lines from Dublin to Cork, Limerick, Athlone and the Northern Ireland border are equipped with the US&S-designed CAWS, which dates from 1984. This uses coded track circuits to repeat lineside signalling aspects in the cab, but does not trigger a brake intervention unless a driver fails to respond to a change of aspect. A variant using a different carrier frequency and more codes provides some ATP functions for the 1·5 kV electrified DART suburban network in Dublin. However, more than half of the 2 400 km network has no train protection of any type.

With its existing CTC control centre reaching life-expiry, IÉ has started developing plans for a new National Train Control Centre in Dublin to manage the entire network from around 2024.