The CARGOSPEED project is funded by the European Commission, DG TREN and is attached to Subprogramme Area: Key Action Land Transport and Marine Technologies. CargoSpeed officially started on 1st January 2001 and had originally a duration of 30 months. The project has been granted an extension with a new completion date of end of July 2004. The project aimed at integrating the well-known RoRo technology into the rail industry, due to the following situation:
- The intermodal transfer times currently required for road to rail interchanges make it uneconomic to use for stage distances of under 500 km;
- There are hundreds of thousands of standard non-liftable semitrailers in Europe;
- There is strong resistance from the Road haulage industry to invest in the costly specialist trailers required by existing piggyback Lift On - Lift Off solutions.
CargoSpeed - Cargo rail/road interchange at Speed - supports the sustainable flow of cargo from road to rail and addresses the congestion problems on the roads within Europe. The system reduces the costs for road/rail intermodalism and increases the speed of the operation at combined terminals. It halves the economic break-even distance for intermodal freight movements. The reduction of costs of the complete system in comparison to common techniques amounts to 30 %. Outcome of the project are a prototype including a CargoSpeed rail -wagon and the transfer mechanism. A specific wellfloor for the wagon and a Pop-up lifting and turning mechanism was constructed and demonstrated. In order to achieve a reliable and cost efficient system a simulation and animation of the terminal was prepared and comprehensive dissemination and exploitation measurements are carried out. The marketability has been proven.
CargoSpeed is an innovative solution to the transfer of semi trailers that will permit a functioning rail freight system to operate within a truly balanced and sustainable intermodal transport system. The main CargoSpeed task is to design, build and test the CargoSpeed system, which includes a wagon with a moveable well floor and a Pop-Up system, placed on a dedicated terminal.
- To halve the economic break-even distance for intermodal freight movements from the current 500 - 600 kilometres to around 300 kilometres.
- To be operational within piggyback gauge, thereby avoiding the massive expense of upgrading tunnels to UIC 'C' gauge or super gauge (as Eurotunnel).
- To accommodate standard non-liftable semi trailers, including high-cube and aerodynamic semi trailers.
- To achieve random-access at interchanges, thereby enabling 'bus-stop' type operations along the route.
- To achieve RoRo interchanges of 30 or more arriving standard semi trailers with 30 or more departing semi trailers SIMULTANEOUSLY instead of the existing one-by-one Lo-Lo practice.
- To minimise the times intermodal trains spend in terminals. Rail wagons only earn when moving freight.
CargoSpeed - Cargo rail/road interchange at Speed - supports the sustainable flow of cargo from road to rail and addresses the congestion problems on the roads within Europe.
The system reduces the costs for road/rail intermodalism and increases the speed of the operation at combined terminals. It halves the economic break-even distance for intermodal freight movements.