Ansaldo STS Australia, a subsidiary of Ansaldo STS, has won contracts worth €289m to upgrade signalling systems on Rio Tinto's iron ore rail network in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
The first contract is worth €253m and has been awarded under the framework agreement signed between Ansaldo STS and Rio Tinto in 2010.
The framework agreement is to develop and deliver an automated train management system for Rio Tinto Iron Ore's 1,500km heavy-haul rail network in Pilbara.
Scheduled to be completed in 2015, the automated heavy-haul railway system is intended to improve the flexibility and capacity of Rio Tinto Iron Ore's mining operation.
Ansaldo STS will develop a modular signalling system incorporating a centralised vital safety server to manage train movements and onboard driving modules for the locomotives, which will enable fully automatic operation.
The system will also feature the complete reuse of wayside infrastructure and minimisation of disruption to train operations during deployment.
The second contract, worth €36m, has been awarded as part of the framework agreement to carry out the next phases of upgrades to improve capacity and efficiency on the heavy-haul rail network.
Upgrades will be made to Rio Tinto's locomotive control systems to enable the introduction of electronically controlled pneumatic (ECP) braking.
Ansaldo STS will later complete the installation and system integration of ECP braking on Rio Tinto's heavy-haul rail fleet, which will help reduce delays of the iron ore trains as they travel continuously from mine to port along the 1,500km remote heavy-haul rail line.
The company will carry out the work over the next five years to support Rio Tinto's operational efficiency in the Pilbara region.