Future trends in railway engineering

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22 Citations (Scopus)


This article reviews the current state of railway engineering with a focus on the steady development of conventional technology that has led to the 575 km/h run of the French TGV train in 2007. Several key engineering areas are explored and predictions made for future technological developments in vehicle and track design including active suspension, improved aerodynamic performance, and novel track systems such as slab track. Non-conventional technologies such as magnetic levitation are discussed but the conclusion arrived at is that considerable improvements are still possible through optimization and incremental development of conventional engineering solutions and that, in the short to medium term, implementation of radically novel systems is less likely.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2743-2750
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science
Issue number12
Early online date2 Jun 2009
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2009
Externally publishedYes


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