Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to build railway test facility

13 December 2012 (Last Updated December 13th, 2012 18:30)

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has completed plans to build a new railway transportation system verification facility at the Wadaoki Plant, which is part of its Mihara Machinery Works in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has completed plans to build a new railway transportation system verification facility at the Wadaoki Plant, which is part of its Mihara Machinery Works in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan.

"The centre will also help in improving Japan’s railway system maintenance and management capabilities."

The Mihara Test Center, scheduled to start operations in the first half of 2014, will include a 3.2km loop rail track.

The company said the new centre will be designed to meet global requirements by accommodating several international standards, with the aim of exporting urban transportation infrastructure.

The new centre, which will function as a support tool to verify compliance with international standards and promote product development, is mainly aimed at strengthening Japan’s railway system business.

The centre will also help in improving Japan’s railway system maintenance and management capabilities.

Outside entities such as other companies, government offices and organisations will also be able use the new centre.

According to MHI’s plan, facilities at the centre will be improved in the future to allow verification testing and demonstrations related to smart communities.

The Japanese firm already has test tracks at the Wadaoki Plant to be used for railway systems, automated people mover (APM) systems and high-speed surface transport (HSST) magnetic levitation systems.

With the new centre, the existing test tracks will be extended by introducing loop tracks that are about five times longer, which will allow testing to be carried out at a maximum speed of 100km/h, as well as testing issues such as noise on curves and continuous operation. Construction of the new centre is scheduled to start in March 2013 and the first phase is expected to be completed within 17 months.