SWITZERLAND: Windhoff Bahn- und Anlagentechnik has announced details of the 35 self-propelled on-track machines which it is to supply to Swiss Federal Railways under the largest single contract which the company has won.

Deliveries are scheduled from spring 2017 until 2021, with the first five vehicles to undergo six months of in-service testing to enable any feedback to be incorporated into series production. SBB also has options to place further orders.

SBB intends to use the vehicles for scheduled infrastructure maintenance as well as ‘trouble-shooting’ and urgent repairs. Each vehicle will be equipped with a crane and a loading platform which will be partly lowered to just 1 000 mm above rail height. There will be two independent driving positions, suitable for seated or standing operators to enable safe movements when running on the main line and when shunting within a possession.

The bidirectional vehicles will have twin diesel engines with automatic start-stop functions, enabling one engine to be shut down to save fuel. Windhoff said it won the order thanks to the ‘innovative’ design of its running gear, which would combine low wear and high tractive effort with ‘extraordinary’ curve negotiating characteristics. The maximum speed will be 100 km/h, even when fully loaded to a total weight of 40 tonnes, with sufficient performance to tackle gradients without loss of speed. ETCS will be the only train control system fitted to the vehicles.