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Rail News: Communication and Signal

Updates from Amsted Rail, Harsco Track Technologies, Siemens, NICE Systems and RailComm

Rail industry suppliers and service providers continue to swing deals and rack up business in the United States and abroad:

• Amsted Rail and European Bearing Corp. have signed an agreement to form a Russian Federation joint venture to assemble, produce and distribute cartridge tapered roller bearings for the Commonwealth of Independent States rail market. The companies plan to begin assembling and distributing freight- and passenger-rail application bearings within six months, then launch full-cycle production. A production site currently is under development.

• Harsco Track Technologies (HTT) won a multi-year contract from the Israel Railways to implement a coordinated rail grinding program that includes operating personnel, equipment and maintenance services. The program will be similar to HTT's ongoing contract services for U.S. and United Kingdom railroads. The Israel Railways plans to modernize its system by 2010 to more than double freight and passenger volumes. HTT will begin an initial assignment in April after rail grinding equipment arrives from the United States.

• Siemens plc's Desiro trains have surpassed 100 million miles in passenger service in the United Kingdom. A fleet of 279 trains travel from Southampton on the south coast to Glasgow, Scotland, via London Midland, One, Heathrow Express, First TransPennine Express and South West Trains. Siemens recently obtained an order from Porterbrook for 37 electric Desiro trains, which will bring the total number of Desiro trains operating in the U.K. to more than 300.

• NICE Systems Ltd. received a follow-on order from China's Ministry of Railways for video Internet Protocol-based systems. The ministry will use the real-time digital video systems to enhance safety and security on the Beijing-to-Tianjin intercity passenger line — the country's first high-speed passenger rail service, which is expected to launch prior to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

• RailComm Inc. has upgraded Illinois & Midland Railroad's existing interlocking control system to include a local control panel featuring a Web-based remote-control system. The control panel is connected to RailComm's Domain Operations Controller (DOC®) System through a Software-as-a-Service delivery model. The system also includes switch, gate and switch heater controls, train detection and a closed-circuit TV video camera interface.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 1/29/2008