Railcare trials new electric rail maintenance vehicle

Railcare trials new electric rail maintenance vehicle
© railcare.se

The MPV2, designed to be powered and recharged from the catenary system, aims to improve the efficiency and sustainability of railway maintenance.

Railcare, in partnership with ABB Traction Switzerland, has begun the initial testing phase of its newly developed Multi-Purpose Vehicle (MPV2), a battery-powered machine designed for railway maintenance. This latest iteration of Railcare's maintenance vehicle features the ability to operate and recharge directly from the catenary system, representing a significant advance in the field of railway infrastructure maintenance.

The MPV2 is powered by a pantograph system, which draws electricity from the overhead lines and also allows the battery to be recharged. This feature is an important step towards increasing the efficiency and sustainability of the vehicle. The collaboration with ABB has been crucial in integrating this dual functionality, which is relatively new for maintenance vehicles of this size.

© railcare.se
© railcare.se

Pär Nyström, project manager at Elpro, a subsidiary of the Railcare Group, reported that the tests, which included charging the vehicle's battery via the overhead line and operating the vacuum motors, had been successful. This development highlights the improved operational efficiency of the MPV2 and its potential to operate in areas without direct access to overhead lines, such as sections undergoing maintenance.

“Combining electric power with the possibility of switching to battery power is an advantage on sites where there is no overhead line, or it is not working for some reason. For example, it is disconnected for safety reasons during maintenance work. This machine simply enables more efficient maintenance work," commented Pär.

The initial tests in Skelleftehamn (Sweden) focused on electrical controls and system communication, and ABB received positive feedback on the test results. Following these tests, the Swedish Transport Administration must approve the MPV2 for use on Swedish railways. The next steps include training of Railcare's machine operators and integration of the vehicle into active contract operations, which is planned for autumn 2024.

Join Our Circle of Insiders: Receive the Weekly Digest That Keeps You Ahead!

Not using RAILVIS Platform yet?

Rent a wagon, sell a locomotive, find a container, convert free capacity to profit. The RAILVIS Platform is the tool you need. It's faster, better organized, and more secure than email or phone calls.

Try RAILVIS Railway Marketplace
RAILVIS screenshot