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Build & Sustainability

Turntide Technologies working with Hitachi Rail on ‘pioneering’ train battery pilot

An electrification and powertrain component firm is working with a rolling stock maker on a green transport trial.

Turntide Technologies is designing and supplying traction battery systems for Newton Aycliffe-based Hitachi Rail.

Bosses say the “pioneering” pilot, which is focused on reducing fuel costs and emissions by at least 20 per cent, “stands to make the UK a global leader in intercity battery train technology”.

They say it also holds great employment potential, with the battery management system – if successful – likely to lead to production line jobs at Turntide’s Gateshead, Sunderland and Cramlington bases.

Mark Cox, general manager of Turntide’s transport business unit, said: “Recognition for the development of this battery system speaks to the level of collaboration and expertise the Turntide team brings to complex electrification projects.

“We possess the advanced skills necessary to assist clients such as Hitachi Rail in overcoming the technical challenges associated with electrifying passenger rail cars and decreasing carbon emissions in the railway sector.”

Jim Brewin, Hitachi Rail’s chief director for UK and Ireland, added: “The innovation and ingenuity Turntide brings to electrification is exemplary, and we are delighted to name the company as our preferred battery systems supplier.

“The electric car industry has already proved battery solutions.

“The real challenge has been to scale this technology for a 200 to 400-tonne train – it isn’t as simple as just making the battery bigger.

“And Hitachi Rail’s engineers, in collaboration with Turntide, have been working for more than a year on creating the necessary algorithms and software to achieve this upscaling.”