South Western Railways award Kiepe Electric a contract for traction upgrade and refurbishment

Kiepe Electric UK Ltd has been awarded a contract by First MTR South Western Trains
Limited to carry out traction upgrade and refurbishment works on 18 Class 442 trains
to be operated on the South Western Railway franchise.
The refurbished units will start to enter service from December 2018. The traction upgrade
element will see the existing DC traction equipment replaced with state-of-the-art AC equipment
incorporating IGBT (insulated-gate bipolar transistor) technology from Kiepe Electric
Düsseldorf. This upgrade will increase the reliability and efficiency of the trains by removing
the life expired equipment. In conjunction with the new traction equipment, a new braking
system from Knorr-Bremse Rail Vehicle Systems will be installed which will improve the environmental
performance of the trains and lower operating costs by enabling regenerative
braking. The refurbishment will include new seats and carpets with at seat power in all classes
and table top charging facilities in 1st Class. The environmental benefits also extend to
the vehicle interiors with the installation of LED lighting. Wifi will be provided throughout and
disabled passengers will be catered for with universal accessible toilets and seating facilities.
“We are delighted to have been awarded this contract which follows on from other recent
turnkey projects, including retraction projects, delivered in the UK”, said Tim Jenkins, Managing
Director Kiepe Electric UK Ltd. “It is a further testament to Kiepe Electric UK’s skill, capability
and flexible approach in supporting customers to improve their rolling stock through delivering
complex turnkey projects”.
Neil Drury, SWR Engineering Director said: “We are delighted to have appointed Kiepe Electric
to carry out part of our planned £45m refurbishment and overhaul of our incoming Class
442 fleet of trains. Kiepe Electric has a proven track record in this field and we know that they
will produce high quality, as-new trains for our customers which will include fully refurbished
interiors, new information systems and improved performance.”

The “Brighton Belle”

Kiepe Electric UK are delighted to be working with the 5BEL trust in developing and designing a sanding system for the Class 403/1 “Brighton Belle” Pullman EMU.

The system will apply sand to improve braking and traction performance in times of low adhesion and will fully comply with GM/RT2461. The 5BEL Trust are restoring the historic “Brighton Belle” back into operational condition for passenger-carrying services.

The “Brighton Belle” was the most famous electric train in the world, running each day between London and Brighton between 1933 and 1972. When built, the quality of the accommodation set standards for luxury travel which continue to inspire today.  Each car was individually designed by a different leading British design house. It was – and will be again – the leading icon of the Art Deco period. The 5BEL Trust aim to have this wonderful train running on the mainline for many years so that future generations can enjoy an authentic 1930′s travel experience.



KEUK has a long history of providing sanding solutions into the UK rail market and are becoming increasingly successful in assisting Leasing Companies and Train Operating Companies achieve franchise commitments by installing technical enhancements, refurbishing existing rolling stock and increasing fleet reliability.

Renatus Re-Tractioning Series Roll-Out for 30 off Class 321 EMUs Awarded to Kiepe Electric UK by Eversholt Rail

Following the success with the pre-series upgraded traction and auxiliary system with innovative energy-saving Kiepe Electric traction equipment on Class 321 EMU No 321 448, Kiepe Electric UK is pleased to announce that it has received an order from Eversholt Rail for a further 30 off traction and auxiliary equipment packages for the first batch of mid-life upgraded and re-tractioned Class 321 EMUs.

Eversholt Rail has committed to this investment ahead of the new East Anglia franchise being let with 10 off Class 321 EMUs being delivered into service with Abellio Greater Anglia by October 2016 and the remaining 20 off EMUs being offered for service when the new East Anglia franchise starts.

In 2013, Eversholt Rail and Vossloh Kiepe embarked on the pre-series project to demonstrate modern AC traction on a Class 321 unit. The key objectives were to reduce journey time for passengers, improve reliability and maintainability, and reduce the total cost of operation through a combination of reduced energy consumption and regenerative braking.

The major change to the Class 321 EMUs traction packages includes replacing the current DC traction system with a modern lighter-weight 3-phase AC Insulated-Gate Bipolar Transistor (IGBT) traction system.

The new AC traction system is contained in a single case and uses the same bogie frame and axle suspension tube mountings as the present DC traction case.   Reliability is improved by the reduction in the number of moving parts and lower maintenance requirements.

Vossloh Kiepe in Düsseldorf will be responsible for the manufacture and delivery of the AC traction equipment including the Main Transformer, the AC Traction Motors, the Traction Converter, the Auxiliary Power Supply Unit and the installation of a modern braking system with improved wheel-slide prevention.  The traction system provides a regenerative braking facility that uses the traction motors as generators when the train is braking.  The electrical energy generated is fed back into the overhead 25 kV traction power supplies and offsets the electrical demands of other trains on the same network.

Vossloh UK based in Birmingham will carry out the Turnkey project that includes engineering design, approvals, installation and testing of the equipment.

The upgraded units, given the programme name Renatus by Eversholt Rail, will follow the work being undertaken by Wabtec in their Doncaster facility to vastly improve the Class 321 EMU passenger environment.

Eversholt Rail is committed to enhancing its existing rolling stock to meet passenger expectations and reduce costs to the UK rail industry with the Class 321 product upgrade matching the quality and performance of a new train.  The contract for the re-tractioning builds on the strong relationship between Eversholt Rail and Vossloh Kiepe, both in the UK and in Germany.

When the contract was announced by Eversholt Rail, Mark Williamson, Managing Director of Vossloh Kiepe UK Limited said; “We are delighted to have secured this contract for new and modern Vossloh Kiepe traction equipment for the Eversholt Rail Class 321 Fleet.  Our clear focus is on ensuring that our newly fitted traction equipment and integrated braking enhancements deliver a highly reliable and greatly improved Class 321 performance level for Eversholt Rail, the train operators and the passengers that use these trains in future years.”


Kiepe Electric UK completes the installation of 2 off Class 37 locomotives with Hitachi Rail ETCS

Hitachi Rail Europe (HRE) awarded Kiepe Electric UK a contract in 2015 to integrate and install the Hitachi European Rail Traffic Management System/European Train Control System (ERTMS/ETCS) to 2 off Class 37/5 locomotives, for operation west of Sutton Bridge Junction and Shrewsbury on the Cambrian Line in Wales.  The two locomotives, Nos 37668 and 37669, are owned and operated by West Coast Railways.

Vossloh Kiepe’s turnkey project included the integrated design, engineering, procurement and the installation and commissioning at Barrow Hill in Chesterfield.

The installation of ETCS on Class 37 Locomotives is a complex task.  There are many unique features on each locomotive as the class was originally supplied in twelve batches and subsequently maintained by numerous operators who independently carried out their own internal modifications.  However, Vossloh Kiepe offered HRE the benefits of its experience by utilising many aspects of the successful ETCS approved design, installation and conversion that Vossloh Kiepe had undertaken on 3 off Class 37 Locomotives for Network Rail.  These three locomotives were reclassified as Class 97 and numbered 97302, 97303 and 97304.

In collaboration with HRE, Vossloh Kiepe’s Engineering Design office developed the post-concept design for the package of work and produced the necessary design pack.  Vossloh Kiepe provided site and safety management and skilled and certificated tradesmen, including a coded welder when required.  The project included the removal of both redundant and obsolete cab equipment together with the installation of new ETCS equipment.

To locate the new Doppler radar and balise (transducer) antenna installation, Vossloh Kiepe redesigned and installed a replacement long range fuel tank in order to make provision for the new equipment that was being installed on the underside of the fuel tank including a revised wiring installation.  The design incorporated full Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and was approved to meet Railway Group Standards.

The package of work included modifying the ETCS cubicles to allow occasional access to the rectifiers and fitting of new On-Train Monitoring Recorder (OTMR) and upgrading the Train Protection and Warning System (TPWS) Equipment, GSM-R/GPS and GSM-R/Data Antennas, and ETCS Brake Control Equipment.  Vossloh Kiepe reviewed and modified the cab desk design and fitted new cab equipment housings that incorporated a 240V power inverter, socket and Ethernet connection on the non-drivers side for a secondary Desktop Management Interface (DMI)/laptop. New axle speed probes were also provided and fitted.

Following the completion of the installation, Vossloh Kiepe undertook verification and routine testing of the ETCS, TPWS and OTMR systems and assisted in performing the commissioning and set-up of the ETCS system before final testing and handover to the Customer.

The spot-hire locomotives will provide additional haulage capability and flexibility for commercial operations over the Cambrian line and providing further ERMTS/ETCS operating experience for the roll-out across Network Rail.