The client had an aging fleet of ore wagons built in the 1950’s and 60’s and they had already got renewal offers from Kiruna Wagons, the supplier of wagons for the Kiruna-Narvik Line.
The client needed railway expertise to evaluate the technical specifications, suitability and competitiveness of the wagon type offered.
SNC-Lavalin's activities included:
- Assess the current operation and requirements
- Search for alternative suppliers, benchmark price and advice whether a competition should be held
- Technical specification, dimensions and central coupler concept
- Check whether a SA3 central coupler can be used and if retrofit of central couplers on existing diesel locos is feasible. A dual coupler was necessary on the locos, since they are also used with regular UIC buffer and couplers.
- Examine railway bridge axle load limitations and line curvature requirements. Check with infrastructure owner if future upgrades are possible.
The client has acquired “state of the art” heavy haul wagons which will allow increased freight capacity as the axle load limit will be raised from 24 tons to 30 tons and beyond. The new wagons fit well in the operation and will need less maintenance.
The trains are currently operated with coupler wagons, but the locos are being modified with Unilink couplers to be ready when all the new wagons are delivered. Then the coupler wagons can be taken out of regular traffic.
SNC-Lavalin added railway expertise to the project and gave the client more confidence in the negotiations with the wagons supplier and assistance with the details.