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Rail News: Railroading Supplier Spotlight

Rail supplier news from Protran, RailWorks, Greenbrier, AXION and Cubic; and in memoriam: Matt Klemchalk (April 22)

The Transportation Research Board awarded a grant to Protran Technology to develop and test the Intelligence Rail Integrity System (IRIS) to provide advance warning of rail buckling and breaks, with the support of the Federal Transit Administration and recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board to incorporate safety technology as a secondary warning. Protran Technology partnered with the Maryland Transit Administration. Under the grant's first stage, Protran Technology provided the first real-time network of remote sensors installed on continuous-welded rail.

RailWorks Corp. has named John Young executive vice president to oversee the company's U.S. track operations, which provide track construction, maintenance and rehabilitation services. Young has 20 years of experience with transportation and heavy civil works projects, having worked for major contractors such as Kiewit and Zachry Construction. Most recently, he was senior vice president at Zachry.

The Greenbrier Cos. Inc. announced Jim Cowan has joined the company as senior vice president of operations, a newly created position. He will report to Chairman and Chief Executive Officer William Furman. Most recently, Cowan worked for Amsted Rail to support their activities in Brazil. Before that, he served as president and chief executive officer of American Railcar Industries Inc. (ARI), where he also served on the boards of three ARI joint ventures. Prior to entering the rail industry, Cowan spent 26 years in the engineering, construction and manufacturing of steel and tubular products.

AXION International Holdings Inc. announced on April 17 that it expects first-quarter 2014 revenue to total $4.9 million, a 182 percent increase over the same period in 2013. First-quarter revenue equates to nearly 75 percent of AXION's 2013 full-year revenue. The company's Engineered Products and Reprocessing divisions each contributed about 50 percent of total revenue, according to a company press release.

Cubic Transportation Systems and New South Wales completed ahead of schedule the rollout of the new Opal smart card to all train stations in the greater Sydney area. Opal became available to all rail passengers in the Australian region on April 11.

Matt Klemchalk, chief estimator of track at Railroad Construction Co., died April 10 of an aneurism, according to a National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) bulletin. He was 35. Klemchalk served on the NRC's Awards Committee and recently became a member of the AREMA Technical Committee 24. He is survived by his parents and a sister. A funeral service was held April 15 in Ramsey, N.J.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/22/2014