Unipart wins DfT and Innovate UK funding to develop electric rail technology


McCulloch TRTOctober 2020 – Unipart has won a share of £9.4m funding from the Department of Transport and Innovate UK to develop zero-emissions rail technology.

The ‘TRT-e’ project was named a winner in the environmental sustainability category for an industry-changing electric Trac Rail Transposer (TRT-e) which will be developed in conjunction with Hyperbat – Unipart’s joint venture with Williams Advanced Engineering – which designs and manufactures high-performance electric vehicle batteries.

Designed by McCulloch Rail and manufactured by Unipart Rail, TRTs (pictured) are the safest, most versatile, rail handling machine on the rail infrastructure. With the 2020 First of a Kind award funding, the partnership will work together to replace the current diesel power unit with an electric motor, battery power pack and electronic control system.

Electric technology will enable the TRT to be worked more extensively on the rail infrastructure where diesel emissions and noise pollution are a particular problem, for example, in underground systems, tunnels and enclosed stations.

The output of this project will be a full working prototype, performance-tested, certified and ready to be worked on the UK rail network by McCulloch Rail and demonstrated to potential customers worldwide.

Unipart is committed to and investing in the electric vehicle market. Unipart Logistics has a number of aftermarket and in-production partnerships with premium automotive manufacturers, and is developing its supply chain solutions for electric vehicle manufacturers.

In addition to the Hyperbat joint venture with Williams Advanced Engineering, Unipart Manufacturing has won a number of grants from the Advanced Propulsion Centre UK as part of the Government’s industrial strategy commitment to be a world leader in the design and manufacture of zero-emissions technology.