A local Newcastle company with a worldwide presence is supplying and installing all signals, controls and communications for the Newcastle Light Rail Project. 4Tel is not just looking at the specifications of the project, but taking a forward-thinking approach to how the new infrastructure will be used and operated in the future.

With the Newcastle Light Rail Project – the focus of a major upgrade of Newcastle’s public transport network – ramping up, 4Tel was awarded two contracts for the project’s signalling and communications packages.

The company is undertaking the core networking, cabling and configuration, PA infrastructure, passenger information display, telephony systems, the operational control centre, and the backup control centre, as well as security elements.

The signalling package includes passenger information system software; control systems moving and tracking the trains; systems to maintain and monitor the tracks and power substation switching between the main and redundant centres; and the alarms and input information from the field.

Mark Wood, General Manager of Communications and Electronics at 4Tel said the company’s unique offering involves a high level of system integration. Being an Australian company has also meant all work can be streamlined.

“One key component is all of the system integration, as far as the responsibility for operation of the system, whether they be components from 4Tel, or components from other suppliers integrated into our software systems,” Mr Wood said.

“We’re also an Australian-based company, so it means the interface and interaction with the head contractor, Downer, is such that you don’t have to stay up until all hours of the night to talk to the people that are writing the software modifications.”

Mr Wood said one of the project’s biggest challenges is ensuring flexibility for operators if network conditions change, with 4Tel looking ahead to make sure the project is sustainable.  

“We’re looking ahead to what some of those changes are, and predicting those as part of what we’re doing now.”

The Metro Tunnel Project is set to transform Melbourne’s public transport network with the construction of two 9km rail tunnels and five new underground stations. To ensure the infrastructure is used to its full capacity, the project will roll out high-capacity signalling (HCS) for the first time ever on an existing network in Australia. Here, Melbourne Metro Rail Authority CEO, Evan Tattersall, gives us the rundown of what we can expect from the technology.

This partner content is brought to you by 4Tel. For more information, visit www.4tel.com.au.

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