Knorr-Bremse Wins London Underground Contract

Knorr-Bremse has signed a contract with Siemens Mobility to supply the entrance systems for 94 trains for the London Underground.

IFE, a subsidiary of Knorr-Bremse, has won the biggest contract in its history. Starting in mid-2021, it will deliver the door systems for London’s Piccadilly line. In total, IFE will deliver 3,760 door systems. The contract also includes options for a further 9,000 door systems for an additional 216 trains on other Tube lines by 2030.

Siemens Mobility signed the contract with London. Underground Ltd in November 2018 to supply the 94 new trains for the Piccadilly line. Now Siemens has contracted Knorr-Bremse’s subsidiary IFE to supply the door systems for this contract.

Jürgen Wilder, Member of the Executive Board, Knorr-Bremse AG, said:

“By supplying our entrance technology to the London Underground’s world-famous Piccadilly line, we are helping to meet Londoners’ growing mobility requirements and helping to deliver faster, more frequent and more reliable journeys.

“The order also cements the presence of our highly innovative door systems in London’s rail transportation system, where they are already in use in LRVs, regional multiple units and high-speed trains.”

The contract consists of 3,760 door drives and 7,144 door leaves for the 94 nine-car Inspiro metro trains, which will enter service on the Piccadilly line from 2024.

Oliver Schmidt, Chairperson of the Management Board, Knorr-Bremse GmbH Austria, said:

“We are delighted that our hard work in preparing the bid convinced our customers at Siemens Mobility of our know-how as technology leaders, allowing us to win the largest order in IFE’s history.

“This is the first time that we will be supplying doors for the Tube. The tunnel and vehicle profiles make this a really exciting challenge.”

IFE will work closely with Siemens Mobility to maximise UK content. IFE wants to expand its local presence, especially in greater London, to allow it to ensure the smooth running of its door systems in the new fleet.

Sambit Banerjee, UK Managing Director Rolling Stock and Customer Service, Siemens Mobility, said:

“These next generation Tube trains will provide a step change in passenger experience for those traveling on the Piccadilly line. Key to providing an increased frequency of trains, and therefore greatly improved capacity, is the ability to get on and off the train quickly meaning less congestion on the station platform. We are delighted that Knorr-Bremse and IFE will be our partners in helping make this a reality.”

An unusual feature of the Deep Tube Upgrade Programme is that the door leaves have an unusually pronounced curvature to accommodate the loading gauge of the line. IFE had announced its interest in the project in 2016 and presented its door system for projects with space constraints at that year’s InnoTrans.

The design has been adapted to the requirements of the London Underground, but will still feature tried-and-tested components. Doors that allow passengers to enter and exit the trains quickly will help passenger flow and therefore overall capacity. The door leaves are intended to last 40 years.

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