AWILCO, together with Electric Rail Equipment AB and Inlandsbanan, is testing a new exciting system based on fuel cells for the operation of barriers and signals at unguarded level crossings.
Every year several people tragically die in accidents at unguarded level crossings in Sweden. The Swedish Transport Administration rebuilds and secures approx. 50 crossings with automatic signals and barriers, but as there are estimated to be as many as 3,000 crossings, it has long prospects securing them.
Until now, the solution has been to lay out cables to the site, which can be very expensive and time-consuming.
Together with Inlandsbanan, the Stockholm-based company Electric Rail Equipment AB in close collaboration with AWILCO has introduced a new, cheaper and much smarter solution, which in the long run can help intensify the process of securing the many unguarded level crossings.
Fuel cells are self-sufficient over the winter
The energy supply in the new cabinets is based on a relatively simple system with fuel cells that do not require maintenance and with a very long operating time on the fuel; you can fill up with methanol in late summer and the entire installation will be self-sufficient over the winter and until next spring. From spring to autumn, under normal conditions, the plant is powered exclusively by solar panels and battery.
“Together with AWILCO’s technicians, we’ve succeeded in producing an optimal product and we expect many exciting applications within both road and rail,” says Lars Humla, Electric Rail Equipment AB.