Revolution VLR Demonstrator vehicle launched in Ironbridge, UK

Eversholt Rail, in collaboration with Transport Design International, has launched the Revolution Very Light Rail (RVLR) Demonstrator vehicle at Ironbridge in the UK.

This vehicle will now be demonstrated to investors and potential sponsors to help them understand the design journey and experience the Revolution VLR.

For developing the Ironbridge demonstration site, the two companies worked with Harworth Developments during the last six months.

The RVLR programme was initiated after the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB) and the Department for Transport set a challenge for the delivery of a low-cost rolling stock solution.

The aim was to bring better services on branch tracks and promote the reopening of disused railway lines, along with network extensions.

Launched in 2014, the project has involved seven consortium firms of Eversholt Rail, WMG, Cummins, TDI, RDM Group, Transcal, and RSSB.

Fitted with hybrid diesel-electric powerpacks, the RVLR Demonstrator speeds up to 20mph, offers zero-emissions operations and low noise running in stations.

The vehicle features a 2.8l turbocharged Cummins common rail diesel engine.

It incorporates a powerpack/battery mix for facilitating specific operations.

RVLR, in its demonstrator configuration, has the capacity to operate at a speed of 65mph and a mass of 24.8t, saving almost 40% as against a single-car self-powered heavy rail vehicle with similar capacity.

Given its low mass, the RVLR can operate on light weight modular slab track.

These tracks are claimed to be economical to purchase, deploy, and maintain when compared with the conventional heavy rail infrastructure.

Eversholt Rail client services director Paul Sutherland said: “Eversholt Rail has a proud record of investment in innovative rolling stock programmes, and we are delighted to have played an active role in the RVLR programme since 2018. We believe that RVLR’s characteristics and cost-effectiveness will really assist the business cases for rail line reopenings and extensions across the UK.”

In August this year, the Revolution VLR Consortium completed the build and integration of the vehicle.

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