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Ricardo, in collaboration with Scottish Power, Network Rail and the University of Leeds, has obtained financial aid for two rail projects via a $598.25m (£450m) energy network initiative.

Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) will back Ricardo’s team to carry out two studies in the transport innovation challenges category.

These projects include a Holistic Hydrogen Approach to Heavy Duty Transport (H2H) and railway multi-energy hub networks for integrated green mobility.

The first project will focus on the energy utilised by trains in Scotland, with an aim to discontinue diesel-fuelled trains by 2035.

H2H will assess hydrogen and battery trains and perform a comparison study with complete electrification.

The assessment will be done on two rural lines in Scotland and the results will lead towards the development of a feasibility study, with the potential for a full scale demonstration project.

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This study will be spearheaded by Ricardo, in partnership with Scottish Power, Network Rail and the University of Leeds.

The second project will focus on railway stations, evaluating the viability of connecting vehicles in station car parks as well as the energy utilised by the station and the electricity grid and rail traction systems.

Under this project, multi-energy hubs will be developed, potentially, around 2,500 stations across UK, which will facilitate rail and grid operation.

This study will be led by the University of Leeds, in collaboration with Scottish Power, Network Rail and Ricardo.

The SIF is projected to invest in energy network innovation until 2026.

At first, the projects will obtain money for a two-month ‘Discovery’ stage, with a smaller selection proceeding to a more detailed ‘Alpha’ feasibility study.

The successful projects will later go for full scale demonstration at the ‘Beta’ stage.

Last year in October, Ricardo received a contract from the Taipei City Government to provide Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V) services for Phase Two of the Wanda–Shulin line.