telent has been awarded the RETB (Radio Electronic Token Block) contract for Scotland’s Far North and West Highland Lines by Network Rail to deliver a replacement radio infrastructure. This is to accommodate reallocation of the existing radio frequencies to allow changes to European TV, and allow operational enhancements to the signalling operation.
The next generation RETB system will be implemented on the rural single track lines from Glasgow to Oban via Fort William and from Inverness to the North Coast of Scotland at Thurso.
The project includes the replacement of radio base station equipment at 46 sites and radio units on over 100 trains, including 5 steam locomotives, and must be completed to allow the existing radio frequencies to be reallocated in December 2015.
A key feature of telent’s approach is the migration solution. It is essential that both the existing system and the new system operate in parallel to allow uninterrupted service during the transition phase.
Part of the work will be on one of Network Rail’s highest installations White Corries, 3,563 ft above sea level, where some parts of the mountain range are only accessible by either helicopter or track mounted Land Rovers.
As the Principal Contractor telent will coordinate all aspects of the work, including the initial trial to prove system performance and leading to product acceptance and system safety case approval.
Phil de Silva, Senior Project Manager stated “We are absolutely delighted that telent has been chosen by the Network Rail team. This is our first major project in Scotland and it builds on our extensive GSM-R and CSR radio expertise.”
With annual revenues of over £300 million, telent has decades of experience in supplying a broad range of network and communications services. Today, the privately-held company employs approximately 1,500 people and has an engineering field force that covers the entire UK. Customers include: BT, Virgin Media, Sky, Arqiva, Vodafone, Merseyside Fire & Rescue, the Metropolitan Police, Transport for London, Network Rail, Train Operators, and London Ambulance Service.
Network Rail is the not for dividend owner and operator of Britain’s railway infrastructure, which includes the tracks, signals, tunnels, bridges, viaducts, level crossings and stations – the largest of which we also manage. We aim to provide a safe, reliable and efficient rail infrastructure for freight and passenger trains to use.