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CEF Rolling Stock Test Tracks

The CEF railway testing centre is a unique platform which allows railway manufacturers, equipment suppliers, operators and infrastructure managers to test new railway technologies in operational conditions, improve the quality and the performance of rolling stock or infrastructure components, and put reliable and safe systems into service.

Situated in the north of France near the Belgian border, the site configuration allows customers to test a range of equipment, such as:

  • Urban and suburban rolling stock
  • Infrastructure components
  • Signalling systems
  • Driverless configuration for urban metro trains
  • Full ERTMS level 2 configuration

Test centre for segment trains (including urban, suburban, regional and high-speed trains)

Mainly designed to urban and suburban needs, the centre allows customers to check functional specifications at low speed ranges for many types of rolling stock, including regional trains, high-speed trains and locomotives.

The CEF railway testing centre operates three different test rings.

Rolling stock performance test track

The VEV track is dedicated to rolling stock performances tests, such as traction, braking, noise comfort and electromagnetic compatibility. Its features include:

  • Total length: 2,722m
  • Straight section: 1,400m
  • Curved section: R=325m
  • Cant in curve section: 160mm
  • Top speed: 110km/h
  • Maximum gradient: 7.6‰ (1.5‰ on average on straight section)
  • Power supply: third rail 750VDC; overhead line 750VDC, 1,500VDC, 3,000VDC, 15kVAC 16⅔Hz, and 25kVAC 50Hz/60Hz

Rolling stock endurance test track

The VAE track is used for endurance tests on rolling stock. The loop configuration of the track allows you to maintain solicitation for a long time and to reproduce operating conditions (various sequences include train stops, opening of doors, and cutting compressors). Features of this track include:

  • Total length: 1,822m
  • Straight section: 201m
  • Curved sections: R=310m and R=190m
  • Cant in curves sections: 160mm
  • Top speed: 90km/h
  • Maximum gradient: 8.8‰
  • Power supply: overhead line 750VDC, 1,500VDC, 3,000VDC, 15kVAC 16⅔Hz, and 25kVAC 50Hz/60Hz

Driverless rolling stock test track

The PASC driverless track is design to test signalling, and metro and driverless rolling stock. This track is also equipped with running bands to test rubber-tired metro trains.

This track has a loop configuration, equipped with an S-shape track to reverse the train during service.

This configuration allows the customer to simulate the operation of a real network with two trains simultaneously in a representative functions framework: this includes depot access, itinerary selection, variable inter-station, stopping at platforms, and passenger information on platforms.

  • Total length: 1,798m (loop track), 1,628m (S-shape track)
  • Straight section: 181m
  • Curved sections: R= 305m and R=185m (loop track), R=150m (S-shape track)
  • Cant in curves sections: 160mm (loop track), 0mm (S-shape track)
  • Top speed: 80km/h
  • Maximum gradient: 9‰
  • Power supply: guiding bands 750VDC, overhead line 750VDC and 1,500VDC

Other CEF facilities include two 100m/120m pit tracks inside a technical building with power supply and roof access; one stabilized slab track with electrical power supply; measurement equipment (rail/track geometry and wheel profiles); and lifting actuators (including bogies modification and axle change). The centre has direct access to the French national network.

Rolling stock that has used our facilities includes Alstom and CAF urban and sub-urban rolling stock, Alstom and Bombardier regional trains, and Alstom and Vossloh locomotives. RFF, SNCF, SNCB and RATP infrastructure managers / operators have been involved.

ISO 9001 and IRIS quality certification for the site is in progress.

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Parc Lavoisier

Rue Fresnel

F-59494 Petite Foret



+33 3 27 32 30 25 +33 3 27 32 46 50 www.centre-essais-ferroviaire.com

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Parc Lavoisier

Rue Fresnel

F-59494 Petite Foret



+33 3 27 32 30 25 +33 3 27 32 46 50 www.centre-essais-ferroviaire.com

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