Electrification renewals (Photo: Network Rail)

UK: The Rail Safety & Standards Board has introduced new and revised standards for AC electrification systems and rolling stock which Director of Standards Tom Lee anticipates ‘will help the rail industry save millions of pounds when rolling out new electrification schemes’.

The introduction of Standard RIS-2715-RST Issue 1 (Rolling Stock Subsystem & Interface to AC Energy Subsystem) and updates to GMRT2111 Issue 3 (Rolling Stock Subsystem & Interface to AC Energy Subsystem) provide clearer requirements and guidance for achieving compatibility between rolling stock and AC power systems.

Key points include guidance in relation to the traction power supply system and the overhead contact line/pantograph interface, revision of contact wire height requirements to avoid bridge reconstruction, a method for providing clearance between a standing surface and conducting live parts of rolling stock, requirements on short circuit fault protection, and guidance for several pantograph parameters.

RSSB says the changes could deliver benefits of at least £27m over the next five years, based on 100 single track-km of electrification per year. This could lower the cost of electrification, or enable more route electrification to be delivered for the same outlay.

‘This is a great example of how standards help the industry reduce complexity and avoid unnecessary cost whilst maintaining safety and delivering good operational performance’, Lee commented.