Future Rail | Issue 11 | February 2014

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A surge of infrastructure development is underway in the Gulf Coast Countries, led by a $200bn, 2,200km railway line project and the construction of metros in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait. We take a look at the ambitious plans and ask what effect the 2022 Qatar World Cup will have on the projects.

We also ask if the US could see a revolution in rail travel as several high-speed projects kick off around the country, investigate what it will take to revive Manila’s outdated light rail transit network, and take a look at renewed interest in tram trains in the UK.

Moreover, we ask how predictive maintenance with fibre optic sensors has improved safety on a high-speed commuter line in Hong Kong, and find out how biometric technology can help with onsite time and attendance tracking in railway construction projects.

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In this issue

GCC Rail Revolution
The Gulf Coast Countries’ transport industry is at a turning point as they experience their biggest rail boom yet. We explore its future which includes a $200bn, 2,200km railway line project.
Read the full article.

Time for technology
Railway construction projects have always been under considerable pressure to finish on schedule, with onsite time and attendance reporting being a particular challenge. Simeio explores how technology can solve this problem.
Read the full article.

Driving Change
Last year, the European Commission appointed a consortium to validate a model for a pan-Continental passenger transport information and booking system. We get an update on the situation.
Read the full article.

Operation Manila
The recent failed tender to overhaul and extend Manila’s LRT1 light rail line has cast doubt on the entire project. We investigate the government’s new plan of action to rescue the LRT1.
Read the full article.

The Tram-Train Trial
Huddersfield University’s Institute of Railway Research is undertaking a £60 million tram-train research project and the first UK trial of the Tram-Train concept. We get the inside track from David Crosbee.
Read the full article.

Sensing Danger
Fibre optic sensors could hold the key to reducing train accidents and improving overall railway safety. We ask Professor Hwayaw Tam of Hong Kong Polytechnic University about the technology and its potential roll-out.
Read the full article.

The Rail Network
Network Rail intends to spend £1.9bn rolling out high-speed mobile broadband across the busiest parts of the UK’s rail network. We ask Ingo Flomer of Axell Wireless about the ambitious project.
Read the full article.

Next issue preview

The US has traditionally seen low rail usage, with many streetcar and electric train systems dismantled in the 1940s and 50s. But with a number of high-speed developments underway across the country, we ask if the US is seeing something of a revolution in rail travel.

We also speak to MTR to learn how the company has made London Overground one of the most successful rail franchises in the UK, profile the high-output plant system train being used to electrify Wales and consider the value of diesel backup engines in areas at risk of overhead line failure.

Moreover, we profile the ten fastest trains operating in the continent, look at the latest issues surrounding the proposed HS2 development and investigate whether the first ever on-board Starbucks could show the way for improved passenger services.

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