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ERCI – European Railway Clusters Initiative

These are the Winners of the ERCI Innovation Awards 2020!

On Wednesday 22nd of September, the ERCI network awarded the best European innovations in the railway industry.

For sanitary precautions during the Covid-crisis, this annual ceremony was held online during the Innotrans Business Days.

The award ceremony was introduced by Barbara BONVISSUTO, Head of Unit “Engineering, Maritime and Rail Industries” at the European Commission & Chair of the European Commission “Expert Group on the Competitiveness of the Rail Supply Industry”.

20 participating companies, selected by the European railway clusters, have been assessed by an European Jury composed of railway experts from France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Turkey, Spain and Sweden.

In the end, three companies of the ERCI network came out on top being awarded with this year’s innovation award. The award winners presented their innovative technologies and solutions.

Best SME: CG Rail with the innovation “Lightweight bogie frame” from Germany (cluster Rail.S)

CG Rail is a leading research and development company in the field of innovative lightweight solutions in multi-material design for rolling stock and other traffic systems.

CG Rail developed a novel lightweight bogie frame, which is fully made of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) and offers a weight reduction of nearly 50 %.
The single CFRP-components of the frame are produced by highly automated and very cost-efficient manufacturing technologies following the innovative Industry 4.0 approach.
The bogie frame has been successfully tested over 12 million load cycles according to DIN EN 13749.

Advantages: higher energy efficiency, improved acoustic behaviour, possibility of sensor integration for condition-based maintenance.

Foto: © 2018 Michael Schmidt –

Best large company: ASELSAN with the innovation “MIDAS-R” from Turkey (cluster ARUS)

ASELSAN offers smart, efficient, safe and reliable solutions in the areas of traction and power distribution, train control and management, mainline and urban signalling.

“MIDAS-R” is based on fiber optic distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) technology to collect acoustic data and analyses it in order to detect intrusions on the railway and to detect anomalies on both railway and the train.

Advantages: train tracking, railway security and asset condition monitoring

Coup de Coeur of the Jury: ENEKOM with “Railacoustic” from Turkey (cluster Arus)

ENEKOM is an engineering company, involving in research, development and engineering activities on  technologies supporting the sustainable life concept.

“Railacoustic – Broken and Fractured Rail Detection System” detects small and big rail faults from a distance of 2km with an accurate location information without any misleading information before train comes, automatically and precisely.

Advantages: Avoiding broken rail related train accidents.

The ceremony ended with a presentation of the European Recovery plan in the railway industry, by Barbara BONVISSUTO.

Many thanks to all the companies which participated this year and see you in 2021 for a new edition of the ERCI Innovation Awards!


ABOUT ERCI – European Railway Clusters Initiative

Founded in 2010, ERCI is the only railway clusters network in Europe. ERCI includes 15 major research and innovation driven railway clusters and represents about 1,000 SMEs in 17 countries.

Its primary objective is to reinforce the competitiveness of the European rail industry through cooperation between large companies, SMEs and research institutes on close-to-market innovation projects.

European Railway Clusters Initiative (ERCI)
Dirk-Ulrich Krueger (spokesperson), Rail.S

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