28.06.2018 20:46

V European Rolling Stock Forum

The Fifth European Rolling Stock Forum was held in Warsaw on 21 March. This is a cyclic conference organized every year by TOR-Konferencje under the patronage of many European and Polish institutions, the Railway Research Institute including. The theme of this year’s edition was dominated by several raising questions or concerns issues connected with railway vehicles’ production, operation and maintenance.

The first of them referred to the preparation of the railway sector to new challenges relating to the so called technical pillar of the 4th Railway Package. It includes issues connected with interoperability and technical standardization, rail traffic safety, certification and placing the rolling stock to service. Representatives of The Office of Rail Transport (UTK) and the Association of the European Rail Industry (UNIFE) expressed their views on those topics. Also the International Union of Railways (UIC) presented a programme to develop international standards to apply on a global level – International Railway Solution (IRS).

The second crucial problems was connected with the optimization of railway vehicles’ drives. The speeches referred to both the reduction of energy consumption and the status quo of research on the application of alternative drives, i.e. the use of fuel cells. Moreover the experience in construction and operation of hybrid vehicles was discussed.

The discussion also focused on the amount of demand on new rolling stock for passenger and freight services on the domestic and international markets. Both the producers and future potential users spoke about prospects of the rolling stock market in Poland. One of the topics concerned the provision of appropriate maintenance and service for vehicles during their exploitation, especially in the context of progressing rolling stock digitalization as well as the exploitation process, technical maintenance in particular.

The conference organizers invited the Railway Research Institute’s delegate – Jan Raczyński to present the assessment of the rolling stock needs for the future central airport operation. The speech covered solutions in terms of railway services for airports applied or planned in the world. Depending on their character and size, airports are operated by various means of transport, from urban or regional trains to high-speed rail. A special category of railway services are lines dedicated to operate to/from airports situated far away from city centers, such as the new Polish airport will be. Examples of such solutions and potential rolling stock parameters in Polish conditions were presented.