US-based Wabtec has secured a $26m order to provide components, including electronically controlled pneumatic (ECP) braking equipment, for 1,186 freight cars to be built for the Saudi Arabia Railway.

As part of the deal, Wabtec will provide ECP and pneumatic brake equipment, draft gears, bogies and truck-mounted brakes, with deliveries scheduled over the next two years.

With standard pneumatic brake equipment, the brakes are applied and released throughout the train sequentially, one car after another, while the ECP equipment uses an electronic signal to apply and release the brakes simultaneously throughout the train.

"This project demonstrates the global reach of our freight rail business."

Wabtec president and CEO Raymond Betler said: "This project demonstrates the global reach of our freight rail business, which offers products and technologies to help our worldwide customers improve safety, productivity and efficiency.

"The benefits of ECP braking technology in commercial service have been proven by heavy-haul railroads around the world.

"Continued investment in this technology demonstrates that railroads can deploy ECP to reduce cycle times and improve train handling, among other operational benefits."

The company noted that the trains equipped with ECP braking can operate safely at higher speeds with up to a 60% reduction in stopping distance leading to improved throughput and capacity, reduced wear on wheels, rails and brake shoes, as well as improved efficiency with a favourable return on investment.

In July, Wabtec has confirmed its plans to acquire French rail products firm Faiveley Transport for $1.8bn, to create one of the world’s largest public rail equipment supply companies, with revenues between $4bn and $5bn.