Tata Steel has announced the signing of a prestigious contract to supply highly wear-resistant rail for the Crossrail project beneath the heart of London.
The Crossrail route will serve 40 stations and travel more than 100km from Reading and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21km tunnels below central London to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.
Tata Steel has already commenced deliveries to the Crossrail project, and will ultimately supply the project with more than 57km of its heat treated, wear-resistant rail.
In total 7,000 tonnes of Tata Steel rail will be used to create one of Europe’s largest railway and infrastructure projects.
During 2015, Crossrail’s major tunnelling works will conclude and the focus will shift towards fit-out and implementing railway systems within the tunnels and stations.
Alstom, TSO and Costain Limited Joint Venture (ATCjv) have been appointed to provide the tunnel fit-out, including track and train power supply, in the central area which extends east under London from the Royal Oak tunnel portal at Paddington. Tata Steel rail will be installed across the route.
Its rail sector head, Gérard Glas commented: “The Crossrail project will have a huge impact on improving the commuting experience in London and we are delighted to be a part of that.
“Our premium heat-treated rail is produced using a unique patented process which ensures it has exceptional wear resistance.
“Rather than using traditional methods of heating and cooling, Tata Steel has developed a system where the rail moves through an induction furnace which uses an electromagnetic field to heat the steel to 950°C. The rail is then rapidly cooled using compressed air.
The resulting uniquely low residual stresses provide further protection against risk of rail failure compared to other in-line heat treatment processes.”
Steel will be manufactured at Tata Steel’s Scunthorpe site in the UK before being rolled at the company’s Hayange mill in northern France.