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Future Rail: Issue 28 | August 2015

The Tomorrow’s Train Design Today competition aims to find passenger rolling stock designs that provide a glimpse of the future, and 42 Technology did just that with its reconfigurable carriage concept. We take a closer look at the company’s winning design.

We also find out how Network Rail and forensic crime prevention organisation Smartwater are working to tackle cable theft, look into warnings that going digital with ERTMS could mean a greater threat of cyber attacks, and learn how researchers are searching for the optimum steel for the construction of future railways.

Also in this issue, we ask how operators can cater better to passengers, examine a new technology that tracks lost luggage, and check out Transport for London’s plans to redevelop disused Tube stations into new public spaces.

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In this issue

Life after Abandonment
Transport for London is looking for commercial partners to redevelop the disused Down Street Tube station, the first in a planned series of repurposing projects. Chris Lo looks into potential impacts of the programme and the challenges involved.
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Spoilt for Choice
In April, UK-based 42 Technology made the top three of Tomorrow’s Train Design Today competition. Gary Peters takes a closer look at the company’s winning design: a carriage reconfigurable to carry either passengers or freight.
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Fighting Crime with Forensics
Forensic crime prevention organisation SmartWater has helped the UK’s Network Rail reduce cable theft on one of its routes by 54%. Gary Peters looks into the benefits of taking a forensic approach to rail crime prevention.
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Insider Threat
The UK’s national railways are preparing to go digital with a new signalling system, but experts say it could mean greater vulnerability to cyber attacks. Eva Grey looks into the risks and the security plans being put into place.
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Searching for Strong Steel
A new project aims to identify the optimum steel for modern railways in order to reduce heavy maintenance and renewal costs for rail tracks. Dr Gareth Evans speaks to the researchers to find out more.
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Customers as People
As innovative start-ups continue to use technology to tear open established industries by offering an enjoyable and easy customer experience, Adam Leach investigates how rail operators can cater better to the needs of their passengers.
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Tracked in Transit
Virgin Trains has announced the rollout of HomingPIN, a tracking technology to help railway passengers find lost luggage. Eva Grey finds out more about the technology.
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Next issue preview

A fully electrified railway network allows operators to plug in to a totally renewable source of electricity, but how easy is it to make the switch, and who is leading the way? We find out.

Following a number of recent derailments in the US, we ask why the country’s industry hasn’t fully embraced positive train control yet. Also in safety, we investigate what is being done to reduce the number of suicides at stations.

Moreover, we investigate the links between railway performance and the way public subsidies are allocated in Europe, and take a look behind the scenes of London’s Night Tube launch in September Last but not least, we check in on the progress of Australia’s Inland Rail project, a proposed passenger and freight line between Melbourne and Brisbane.

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