Westermo line extenders and switches help manage train movements from Cardiff Central

Westermo products meet the requirements of EN 50121-4 for railway trackside use and are constructed to resist the toughest operating conditions.

Westermo is supplying over 170 of its Wolverine Ethernet line extenders and 30 Lynx Ethernet switches as part of the Cardiff Area Signalling Renewal (CASR) project which covers 192 route miles of track between Newport and Port Talbot, in Glamorgan, UK. 

Network Rail awarded the signalling and power distribution contracts for project to Atkins and they selected Westermo Wolverine DDW-225 line extenders to provide the basis of a robust and resilient IP- based communications network. Atkins was familiar with Westermo as a supplier of high performance communication products and had previously used its modems on a number of systems and projects. Westermo was not only able to supply robust products that had the necessary approvals, but also provided technical support and installation advice for this difficult application.

Westermo line extenders already had Network Rail acceptance for telecommunications applications and it was a simple procedure for this to be extended to cover signalling applications. Used to overcome the 100 metre limitation for Ethernet cabling, they meet the requirements of EN50121-4 for railway trackside use and are constructed to resist the toughest operating conditions.

The CASR project is a technically challenging project and one of the first major schemes to use the latest innovations such as plug couplers and new train detection technology to help save time and money.  Working with Westermo, Atkins produced a basic architecture for a fully distributed system that tied in where possible with the existing fixed telecoms network (FTN) nodes for the scheme. Westermo evaluated the system architecture design and provided advice on commissioning and configuring the devices.

The DDW-225 line extenders form the basis of the Ethernet network which links the signal location cabinets together at various distances depending on where the signals are located. SHDSL (Single-pair high-speed digital subscriber line) technology enables the DDW-225 to support long distance transmission over a mixture of new and legacy copper cabling. The DDW-225 uses the Westermo WeOS operating system that provides the unit with advanced switching and routing functionality.

At each end of the network, and at various points along the 25 miles of track of the CASR Phase 1 area , the Ethernet network connects to the control room using the existing FTN to provide redundancy. Should there be a device failure, or a section of the Ethernet network become damaged or is removed through theft, the data from the sensor can be re-routed via the FTN network back round to the adjacent  sensor via the ring formed by the remaining cable and FTN.  This is made possible using Westermo’s unique FRNT (Fast Recovery of Network Topology) technology which enables a 20ms recovery time.

Train movement and diagnostic data is being transmitted to the control room at Wales Regional Operations Centre (WROC) via the FTN. Within the control room, over 30 Westermo Lynx switches and DDW-225s are being used to optimise network performance and manage the network delivering data to the SCADA system.

The Lynx 210-FG managed Ethernet switches are designed for use in demanding applications. Also powered by WeOS (Westermo operating system), they provide a stateful inspection firewall, static and dynamic IP routing and IPsec VPN support for more advanced networks. In addition the Lynx 210-FG meets railway trackside standards.

Following a trial period, the systems and communications networks are operating successfully, providing accurate and reliable data on train movements from the trackside locations to the WROC in Cardiff. Phases 1, 2 and 3 are already complete and the project will be fully commissioned during late 2015.

Westermo leads the way at InnoTrans


InnoTrans, the largest rail event in the world, was held from the 23rd to 26th September in Berlin, Germany. InnoTrans is renowned as the international showplace for railway technology, where all the leading companies in the industry are present. This year InnoTrans attracted 139,000 visitors and 2,758 exhibitors, from 55 different countries around the world.

Westermo have been developing networking products specifically for the rail industry for many years and offer complete data communications solutions for applications both on trains and at the trackside. Our real expertise is in developing products that can function in the harshest environments and meet the toughest approval specifications.

During InnoTrans we showed the market what we can offer in terms of quality and the robustness of our solutions. We also took the opportunity to introduce a number of new products, particularly suited to the rail industry; RFIR at the trackside, DDW-002-B1, RFR-212-FB and CASR application story.

Westermo products and solutions were effectively displayed on our stand and attracted many visitors who wanted to see and feel our products, as well as to meet our communication experts. During these intense four days more than 500 wellness smoothies and coffees where also served to interested customers on our stand.

InnoTrans was a very successful event for Westermo in many ways. For the first time Westermo had its own independent stand, that really boosted the company brand and profile at the exhibition. The stand was situated right in the middle of the fair, where all the train manufacturers, system integrators and competitors had their booths.

Westermo also raised its profile to the German market, which is one of the largest for train systems, passenger information systems and trackside solutions. The reception received at InnoTrans shows that Westermo is the market leader for robust data communication solutions for the rail industry with excellent products and high competence to deliver to the needs of our customers.

Westermo investment plan announced

Westermo is delighted to announce a major expansion plan that will see the company invest 175MSEK back into the business over the next 3 years. The plan has been given full approval by Beijer Electronics, the owner of Westermo and will result in the expansion of the workforce by around 50 people in the R&D and sales organizations.

”This means that we can further strengthen our competitiveness on the global market, with enormous growth potential in Europe, America and Asia”, says Lars-Ola Lundkvist, CEO of Westermo. Today we already have an export ratio of 85 % and now we can invest in increasing our production rate as well as expanding our production capability.

”This investment is the fruit of many years hard work developing our product offer as well as continuously improving our processes” says Lars-Ola. “The business culture is completely critical to our achievements and it is a privilege to work with the people at Westermo.”


Lars-Ola Lundkvist, CEO of Westermo

Beijer Electronics invests 175 million SEK in Industrial Data Communication

Read more about Westermo



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