Swedish rail equipment specialist Railcare said it plans to manufacture a zero-emission battery-powered MPV (Multi-Purpose Vehicle) with a range of applications for rail maintenance. The vehicle will be self-propelled and equipped with vacuum pumps, hydraulics and control cabins it said can be used as a battery-powered addition to its vacuum excavator, for example.
The company collaborated with mining equipment specialist Epiroc for the development of the MPV, which it has called the world’s largest battery-powered rail vehicle. A prototype will be built and tested this year in Railcare’s workshop in Skelleftehamn, Sweden, with delivery expected in the second half of the year.
Railcar said Epiroc’s expertise and development platform, as well as ABB’s and Northvolt’s battery technology, helped it get the battery-powered machine on track.
“We continue to have a high level of our innovations and are proud of the results in our collaboration with Epiroc,” said Daniel Öholm, CEO of Railcare Group AB. “We will use their scalable battery technology platform when we launch our first battery powered MPV. Many of our projects are for underground work, with a high demand for safety and the working environment, as well as high efficiency. We see great potential for emission-free vehicles in our existing markets and also opportunities to receive projects from new customer markets.”
Vacuum technology was introduced in 1992 and reportedly has a significant share of the Swedish and British market for ballast exchanges. Railcare has reportedly manufactured more than 50 diesel-powered Railvac machines used to carry out various types of track maintenance including ballast exchange. The company offers products and services primarily in the Nordic countries and the United Kingdom.