Thales and London Underground have begun line testing of the new signalling and train control system destined for LU’s four sub-surface lines.
The Communications Based Train Control (CBTC) system is a development of the SelTrac equipment currently in operation on the Jubilee and Northern lines, and will be rolled out on the District, Circle, Metropolitan and Hammersmith & City lines to increase capacity from 24 to 32 trains per hour (TPH) at peak times by 2023.
Thales was awarded the £760 million contract in August 2015 after the original contract with Bombardier collapsed in 2013.
The first S-Stock train to run under automatic control using the Thales moving block signalling system is now undergoing testing at Old Dalby test track in Leicestershire. A second ‘production model’ train will be ready by the summer incorporating any necessary modifications before all 191 S-Stock trains are returned to Bombardier in Derby to be fitted out with the necessary on-board equipment.
The first 53 will be returned to LU by February 2018, a second batch of 59 by July 2018 and the final batch of 80 by September 2018. Bombardier will release them at a rate of one or two per week to be taken to Old Dalby for 500km of running tests before they return to traffic.
- For more on this, read RAIL 797, published on March 30.