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Strukton Rail has worked with manufacturer System7 to develop Universal Tamper 4·0, which the contractor describes as an intelligent tamping machine that can learn to work by itself.
Strukton used its experience of infrastructure maintenance to contribute various ideas that have been incorporated into the machine, which it said would provide ‘next level tamping technology in-house’, as ‘a new step towards a data-driven future’.
The tamper is able to tamp plain line and turnouts. Data from measurement and inspection trains tells it where and how to tamp turnouts, with machine learning used to improve the process.
It records the position of the track, and can provide information about the density of the ballast below the sleepers by measuring the force applied by the tamping mechanisms.
The tamper requires fewer people to operate it than comparable designs, and offers a 7 dB reduction in operating noise.
This article first appeared on www.railwaygazette.com
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