Battery-electric locomotives for Tube Lines have been tested at MyTestTrack.com's facility at Wirksworth as part of the upgrade of the Jubilee Line to use the revolutionary Transmission-Based Train Control (TBTC) System. TBTC uses train and track-based sensors to detect the location of trains with higher accuracy than existing methods, leading to reduced headways and an increase in capacity.
Wirksworth was selected as a test site for Engineers Trains being equipped with TBTC and this was installed on a dedicated line during the spring of 2007. Vehicles were converted at LH Group’s Barton-under-Needwood works where a Vehicle On-Board Computer was fitted, before moving to Wirksworth where the installation was tested over a three to five-day period.
The benefit of this approach is the use of an environment which is representative of actual service conditions, allowing snags to be exposed and rectified on-site. As the programme has developed, it has been possible to reduce the testing period and ensure greater reliability when the vehicles are returned to service.