Rail industry 5th International Railway Summit, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia The above event was held in the Shangri-La Hotel, in Malaysia’s capital city over three days, 15-17 November 2017. The conference focused on the issues of Social and Economic Sustainability for Rail Transport and was attended by 250 delegates, representing a significant cross-section from 100 countries. The summit was hosted by IRITS Events, in association with the International Union of Railways (UIC) and Huawei Technologies. All the big players were in attendance with representatives from all the Malaysian railway systems, Chinese delegates representing suppliers, railways, metros, European operators, vendors, leaders and experts. On the first day of the summit, 40 rail industry professionals were taken on a tour of KL’s Light Rapid Transit, Ampang Line and a visit to its Operation and Control Centre. The increased use of digital technology was a focus of the summit, showing how it is transforming the rail industry. A central theme of the conference was that there are huge challenges that the rail industry must face. It must become the land transport mode of the 21st Century, with the mobility of rail being its backbone for an effective, integrated, multimodal transportation system. It has distinct advantages over its competitor, road transport in terms of capacity, safety, reliability and environmental acceptability, which need to be emphasised emphatically over and over again to achieve the dominance its warrants. Freight traffic is expected to increase by a factor of three by 2050 from 112,000 to 329,000 billion tonne-kilometres. Global passenger transport will more than double between 2015 and 2050, from 50,000 to 120,000 billion passenger-kilometres with a major focus on urban and intra-city mobility. Massive urbanisation over the coming decades in developing countries will be a certainty. In 2050, 66% of the world’s population will be urban, up from 54% in 2014. A major issue though is the lack of infrastructure in developing countries which will need to be addressed. From an Australian perspective, the talk by Tony Frazier, GM Operations Services, Interstate Network, Australian Rail Track Corporation was of particular interest. The ARTC network, consisting of 8,500 kilometres serviced by 1,200 staff, handles 450 trains per day from Brisbane through Sydney, Adelaide via Melbourne and Broken Hill and across the continent to Kalgoorlie. The network will expand with the construction of the Inland Railway from Melbourne to Brisbane via western NSW. It will be 1,700 kilometres long, using 1,200 kilometres of existing tracks and will include a 6.38 kilometre tunnel in the Toowoomba Range. The Kagaru to Toowoomba section will be delivered through a Public Private Partnership. From Gowrie (west of Toowoomba) to Kagaru a distance of 133.6 km, 100 km will be greenfield line, there will be 11 crossing loops to cater for 1.8 km trains, 8.5 km of tunnels, including the abovementioned Toowoomba Tunnel, 11 viaducts totalling eight kilometres, 51 bridges totalling four kilometres. Construction will take four years with the first trains to operate in 2024/25. Double stacking operation will be available as will axle loadings of 25 tonnes at 80km/h, with future proofing for 30 tonnes at 80 km/h. The conference was well organised and staffed, utilising an excellent venue with very good facilities and transport connections. KL is a vibrant, exciting, growing city and it is tackling its transport issues with considerable foresight, fully aware of the potential transport nightmares that can afflict those places that don’t plan properly for the future, such as Bangkok and Jakarta. Shane O’Neil Top: Norman Frisch, Chairman of the eLTE Industry Alliance and Marketing Director, Transport Sector, Huawei, leads the Digital Railway Transformation Panel Discussion, late afternoon on Day Two. Centre: The large Huawei display at the Summit, which featured interactive displays and, of particular interest to a country such as Australia, a display of equipment that can be used for controlling remote grade or level crossings utilising solar panels. Huawei was a major sponsor of the Summit. Above: The hard-working team of IRITS Events staff from left to right: Akshata Kamath, Chandini Saikia, Raluca Boroianu-Omura, Anuja Raut and Vasena Kularatna-Rodgers at the information desk on Day Three. All images Shane O’Neil 4 RAILWAY DIGEST
Rail industry Aurizon quits interstate intermodal services Rail freight operator Aurizon has exited the interstate intermodal business, running its last revenue trains between Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane in the week commencing Monday 18 December 2017. The profitability of Aurizon’s intermodal business has been in doubt for some time and the decision to quit the business was announced on 14 August 2017 after a comprehensive freight review. It is believed that most of the traffic previously carried by Aurizon has moved to rival operator Pacific National. Subject to regulatory approval, Aurizon has signed a binding agreement with a consortium of Pacific National and Linfox to sell its Queensland Intermodal business, and a separate binding agreement with Pacific National to sell its Acacia Ridge Intermodal Terminal. The sale transaction is expected to be completed by June 2018. With only six months left under the Aurizon banner, GE/Goninan unit 2837 hauls Mackay to Acacia Ridge Intermodal Y776 southbound on the Yandina to Nambour section at Kulangoor on Sunday 24 December 2017. Ray Miller Downer EDI to deliver New Intercity Fleet network modifications Transport for NSW announced on Monday 4 December that Downer EDI had been awarded the contract to deliver station and signal modifications across the suburban and Intercity network in preparation for the arrival of the New Intercity Fleet from 2019. Some existing rail infrastructure needs to be upgraded to accommodate the New Intercity Fleet. This includes: • Platform extensions, • Modifications to infrastructure within the rail corridor, including the installation and relocation of signalling and overhead wiring structures, • Trackwork, • Installation of balises (an electronic beacon or transponder placed between the rails as part of an automatic train protection system) and car markers; and • Installation of CCTV, public address systems, lighting and station furniture, where required. “The New Intercity Fleet will provide customers with more comfortable and reliable journeys between Sydney and the Central Coast, Newcastle, South Coast and Blue Mountains,” said a Transport for NSW spokesperson. “These are new state-of-the-art trains and as with any new technology, we need to make some minor modifications to the stations and signals across the network which will include platform extensions, overhead wiring adjustments and train location technology. The modification work will commence in early 2018 and where possible be completed as part of the existing rail maintenance schedule and track work weekends so we can minimise the impact on the travelling public.” One controversial feature of the new trains, that are being manufactured by Hyundai Rotem/UGL, is the use of fixed seating rather than reversible seating which has been popular with NSW commuters. To read Railway Digest on your PC, Mac, Mobile, Tablet and more, visit www.pocketmags.com FEBRUARY 2018 5
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