UK rolling stock owner Eversholt Rail has joined the Revolution VLR consortium comprising Transport Design International Ltd (TDI), University of Warwick, Cummins, Trancal Engineering and RDM Group, which has been formed to deliver a fully operational very light rail hybrid DMU demonstrator. The vehicle will be assembled and initial vehicle trials will be held at a test track. The project is due to complete in 2020.
Eversholt Rail’s participation in the programme will provide the company with direct access to key light rail technologies, many of which draw upon automotive and aerospace industry best practice.
The consortium has been awarded £2.75m (EUR 3.13 million) funding from the Department for Transport, to take forward the Phase 1 designs and produce the full demonstrator vehicle. The Phase 1 was completed in August 2016, and delivered a detailed design for a self-propelled, hybrid propulsion system, with a concept design for a modular, lightweight train carriage. Under the second phase, it will be manufactured a diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system, packaged in a modular ‘Power Pack’ cassette, plus the lightweighted, modular carbody
The Revolution VLR vehicle is ideally matched to the need for lightweight, energy-efficient system solutions to deliver affordable service growth and extension of the UK’s rail capacity. A bi-directional, 18-metre-long railcar, with seating for 56 passengers and standing room for a further 60, Revolution VLR will use lightweight materials and a modular structure to achieve a tare weight of less than one tonne per linear metre. This allows it to run on lightweight modular slab track. The vehicle will be self-propelled, achieving zero-emission launches from stations, with regenerative braking and optimised hybrid propulsion.