Designing the railway of the future: Fire resistant composite materials and smart modular design.
The overall aim of the Mat4Rail project is to lay the foundation for:
- Reducing train weight by replacing metal parts with Fibre Reinforced Polymers (FRPs)
- Increasing capacity and passenger comfort via built-in modularity of train interior design
Mat4Rail is divided into two work streams. The objectives of the Materials work stream are to develop FRPs that meet all the railway environment requirements regarding Fire, Smoke and Toxicity, mechanical performance and cost-effective manufacturing, to developed structural joints for FRPs, and to innovate the access door system by reaching improvements in term of weight, acoustic attenuation, thermal performances and cost.
The Interior Design work stream is addressing the challenges and shortcomings of current rolling stock in terms of modularity in use, to meet the changing passenger demand during the 30-40 years of an in-service operating life-cycle of a train. This work stream is aimed towards tackling this challenge in three distinct sub-systems: innovative plug & play systems, innovative seats and innovative driver’s desk.