Latest Rail News

07.05.15

Siemens awarded ETCS GRIP 3 contract for GWML

Siemens has been awarded the contract to deliver the European Train Control System (ETCS) Level 2 overlay system for the Great Western Main Line.

The six-month GRIP 3 contract, awarded by Network Rail, covers the development of the system architecture, as well as the staging strategy required to deploy ETCS Level 2 over the conventional signalling system, covering the interlocking areas commissioned by Siemens for the Reading Station Area Redevelopment, Swindon B and Berkshire and Hampshire signalling programmes.  

Commenting on the contract award, project manager Pete Ratcliffe said: “This marks another step forward for ETCS deployment in the UK and the Siemens’ team is delighted to be a continuing part of it. This GRIP 3 contract is a great opportunity for us to work closely with Network Rail to investigate the challenges, scope the work ahead of us and define how the system can deliver the maximum benefit for the operation of the railway.”

Siemens previously delivered phases one and two of Network Rail’s ETCS Framework contract, the development of ETCS for the Thameslink programme and the resignalling works at Reading.

Under the ETCS Framework contract, Siemens successfully completed demonstrations of ETCS functionality and capability, including the UK's first ever on-track radio block centre to radio block centre (RBC-to-RBC) handover between two suppliers - a crucial demonstration of ETCS interoperability, proving that an ETCS Level 2 train can run seamlessly between areas signalled by different suppliers.

Siemens also provided a full simulation of an ETCS 'overlay' (both ETCS Level 2 and conventionally signalled trains) running a representative timetable on the Reading final layout under the control of Siemens Trackguard Futur RBC and Westlock interlockings.

For the Thameslink programme, the company is to deploy its ETCS and automatic train operation (ATO) solutions, which will be overlaid in the London Bridge area. This will enable all train movements to be controlled automatically, delivering 24 trains per hour in each direction on the Thameslink core route at the programme’s completion in 2018.

(Image source: Halász István)

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