End of Rail Manufacturing CRC leaves research void: ARA

Organisation seen as crucial to innovations for the mode

End of Rail Manufacturing CRC leaves research void: ARA
Caroline Wilkie


Further rail research funding will be needed to fill the void left by the closure of the Rail Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) this month, the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) warns.

The ARA notes that the CRC had delivered new technologies to support improved efficiency and safety across the rail network.

"The Rail Manufacturing CRC has worked alongside rail manufacturers and operators to deliver new technology and innovation that will make a real difference to the industry," ARA CEO Caroline Wilkie says.

"The CRC’s collaborative focus has delivered some great results and the team can be very proud of its record of achievement.

"New funding is now essential to keep the focus on technology and innovation in rail."

Read about the ARA’s strategic plan for rail freight and port, here

The ARA has commissioned a technology research paper to identify future priorities for research and development in the industry.

The ARA’s position is that it is essential government, business and industry work in partnership to continue to build the productivity and competitiveness of the rail network.

"Technology will play an increasing role in the rail industry and continued investment is essential to make sure Australia remains at the forefront of innovation," Wilkie says.

"It is more important than ever that this work continues as the industry prepares for new growth."

It is pointed out that the Rail Manufacturing CRC developed six new technologies that are likely to yield commercial returns.

This includes a new passenger information system being used at Sydney’s Wynyard Station and the development of prototypes for supercapacitor control systems and composite brake discs.

Other projects are delivering improved real time monitoring of trains in service as well as condition monitoring to reduce wear and tear and extend maintenance cycles.

The ARA’s technology research brief can be found here.


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