Passenger and freight trains need reliable and safe electrical power, which is why Bender provides electrical safety solutions for passenger and freight trains. This power is produced using a diesel generator or fed into the vehicle from an overhead line or third rail. These drive systems onboard the locomotives or rail cars are generally ungrounded and must be safeguarded using a particular ground-fault monitoring device. Bender ground-fault monitoring devices come in a rail variant to meet the specific shock, vibration, and temperature-resistance requirements. Grounded power supplies can be protected via residual current monitors and voltage relays.
The benefit of fault-finding translates into fewer train delays and improved customer service with reduced associated costs for rail operators. More than 50% of rail signaling power supply issues result from ground faults where damage or deterioration of a cable or its insulating covering will eventually lead to failure, impacting the safety and efficiency of rail operations. Since rail signaling systems are typically ungrounded, a faulted circuit could change a signal's state or trigger the train's shutdown. On ungrounded systems, the first ground fault can often go undetected for days or months, or worse, until a devastating second ground fault occurs while the first fault remains. Critical faults that emerge at lower intervention/insulation limits are even more challenging to track and pinpoint and therefore present a more significant challenge.
The rail cars in passenger trains and refrigerated rail cars for freight transport need separate power supplies. Bender can detect faults early and quickly pinpoint them using ground-fault location devices for grounded and ungrounded applications. This reduces the potential risk for passengers, crew, and equipment and saves valuable maintenance and repair time.
Train routes in mountainous landscapes lead across a sequence of tunnels and bridges. The route operator must be prepared for anything in a tunnel, including a train accident. There are safeguards in place along the route in case of such a catastrophe. Rescue teams must know they can rely on a functioning power supply in the event of a disaster, and ground-fault monitoring is required. Ground faults can be detected before a critical situation and without cable disconnection with Bender monitoring systems.
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