Thales to upgrade rail infrastructure at yet another Spanish port
Thales, a French transportation technology manufacturer, is on a quest to improve rail freight to and from Spanish ports. The most recent initiative entails the development of a 4,4-kilometre-long railway to connect the port of Cadiz, in the south of Spain, to the main line going to Seville.
The railway in question will link the Bajo de la Cabezuela dock in the port of Cadiz to the Las Aletas station and therefore to the main line going to Seville. More specifically, Thales stated that the project includes the design of the railway as well as the implementation of safety, signalling, and telecommunications facilities. Thales will also install ERTMS Level 1 systems along the new railway line.
The project is commissioned by the Spanish infrastructure manager Adif, which allocated 7,29 million euros, as Thales pointed out. According to the French company, the works will not interfere with commercial rail traffic. There will be two phases. The first one will entail infrastructure works at the Bajo de la Cabezuela dock and, after that, “the extension of the Las Aletas interlocking will be carried out in a single phase”.
Thales in Spanish ports
Over the past few months, Thales undertook various projects in different Spanish ports to enhance rail connectivity and boost rail freight to and from the facilities. Since June, Thales is involved in a consortium that will upgrade the railway between the port of Algeciras, the largest in Spain, with Ronda. This project is quite significant because this line is one of the end-points of the TEN-T Mediterranean Corridor.
Moreover, Thales is also taking care of the rail capacity upgrade at the port of Huelva. More specifically, Thales will integrate a new Centralised Traffic Control (CTC) system, automate track gates in the port area, and implement a new light and sound signals system for level crossings. This project will be carried out in two years.The French company has also developed a new concept for the operation and automation of rail maneuvers inside the port of Sevilla in 2021.
In addition, the company also participated in the upgrade of rail terminals in Spain. In 2014, Thales implemented new signalling, safety, and communications systems at the Pancorbo rail terminal, south of the port of Bilbao. More recently, in June 2022, Thales was awarded the contract for the upgrade of the logistics platform in Vitoria-Gasteiz, always south of Bilbao.
The synergies between ports, terminals, and rail infrastructure have recently been under the spotlight, especially in Europe, where ports are increasingly investing in improving rail connectivity. The RailFreight Connects, which will take place at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bremen, Germany, on 6 and 7 September, will be the perfect opportunity for the industry to discuss how these synergies can be boosted. Representatives from HHLA, the port of Genoa, Nevomo, Lohr, DB Netz, UIRR, and more are among the already confirmed speakers. You can find out more about the RailFreight Connects here and retrieve your tickets here.