With train speeds up to 350km/hr (217mph), precise track geometry is crucial. To achieve this accuracy, China has deployed 288 Amberg GRP track surveying systems on projects throughout the country.

The system, which was designed and manufactured in Switzerland, enables contractors to achieve exact accuracy while significantly increasing production rates of the overall slab track construction process. The system is not only used for high-speed rail projects throughout Asia and Europe but also for standard, metro-type slab track construction.

The Amberg track surveying system, which has been recently introduced in North America, is used by the industry’s leading rail contractors such as Balfour Beatty Rail and RailWorks. Both contractors are early adopters of the technology, which allows them to deliver quality projects to their clients.

Swiss manufacturer Amberg Technologies has now delivered 288 GRP track surveying systems to China, where they are used for the precise construction of the country’s massive high-speed rail programme. The Amberg slab track surveying system includes the GRP 1000 survey trolley, powered by the Amberg rail-slab track software application module.

In China, the GRP 1000 configuration is utilised catered for the special requirements of slab track construction, although the system is modular and could address a wide variety of track measurement applications such as clearance, tamping, track geometry surveying and as-built documentation. The system allows to build tracks with exact accuracy and to document the procress for quality assurance during the construction phase and the final verification.

This unique system enables contractors to increase production and accuracy significantly, while minimising inherent risks during the construction process, due to a well-elaborated, real-time operating concept.

The track design is loaded onto the onboard Amberg rail software. During the construction process the system measures, calculates and displays real-time adjustment values of track deviations from the original design. This allows the immediate and precise adjustment of the tracks. To further increase the production, Amberg has designed an entire survey process for slab track construction.

The contractor benefits of the increased production, smaller labour and material costs and minimised risks.

The track owner benefits of a faster construction schedule, better alignments, a smoother ride for customers and less maintenance costs of rolling stock due to smoother track alignments.

“The value of the GRP system is indicative to the number of systems used in China right now. There is no other place in the world where there are more slab track building projects, than in China,” said Brian Daniel, regional manager of Amberg Technologies in North America.

“The expertise we have developed in China is of tremendous benefit for our clients in North America. This is a new technology that offers a more productive work process and ultimately a better overall rail project.”