CRSC sets up lab in Belgrade

By Zhong Nan | China Daily
Updated: June 27, 2019
People visit the stand for China Railway Signal and Communication Co (CRSC) during the second World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, May 16, 2018. [Photo/IC]

Facility to offer train operation control systems for Hungary-Serbia railway

China Railway Signal and Communication Co, the world's largest provider of rail transportation control systems by market share, has established a system laboratory in the Serbian capital of Belgrade to better serve the needs of its foreign clients, said its top executive.

The new system laboratory is designed to provide train operation control systems for the Hungary-Serbia railway. It is the first laboratory for high-speed train operation control system to be built overseas by a Chinese company.

CRSC Chairman Zhou Zhiliang said the laboratory will not only provide core technical support for the Hungary-Serbia railway, which is built to meet the standards of the European Train Control System level 2, but also share the rich experience of China's high-speed railroad development.

The 350-kilometer railway will link Belgrade with the Hungarian capital of Budapest, with 166 km on the Hungarian side and the rest in Serbia. With a designed maximum speed of 200 kilometers per hour, it is expected to reduce the intercity travel time from eight hours to less than three hours.

The railway is expected to be completed by 2023, according to the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Zhou said the control system is the "brain" and the "central nervous system" of a high-speed railway, and it is the core technology to ensure the safe and efficient operation of bullet trains.

The laboratory has been divided into three parts including an equipment area and an operating area. It has a full set of signal systems and is in line with European technical standards for advanced equipment.

It has complete dispatch command and train operation control functions, and can conduct system function testing, interface testing, connectivity testing and train operational data delivery testing.

"The laboratory has not only greatly reduced the on-site testing workload, but also provides a solid technological base for the future operation of the Hungary-Serbia railway," Zhou added.

With equipment such as a radio blocking center, a computer based interlocking system, a centralized traffic control system and a centralized signal monitoring system, he said the laboratory can also serve as a base for the operation and maintenance of railway signal equipment, creating a training environment for Serbian railway technicians.

Construction work on the laboratory began in March 2018 with the aim of establishing a fully featured laboratory for railway train control systems in Europe.

The establishment of the new laboratory in Serbia demonstrates that China's advanced high-speed train control technology and self-developed equipment are fully capable of supporting customized system solutions in the construction of railway projects overseas, said Feng Hao, a researcher at the Institute of Comprehensive Transportation at the National Development and Reform Commission.

He said the move is also helpful for China to further export its industrial standards and complete sets of equipment in this field.

In addition to providing a full range of communications, signal and information systems to the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed rail in Indonesia, which is currently under construction, CRSC helped build the signaling systems for Australia's first driverless subway line in Sydney, which became operational on May 26.

CRSC, a centrally administrated State-owned enterprise, saw the total value of its external contracts signed in the first quarter of 2019 reach 7.48 billion yuan ($1.09 billion), an increase of 16.1 percent year-on-year, with rapid growth in new contracts for its railway, urban transit and overseas businesses.