Germany's Aachen University claims top IMechE rail prize

Germany’s Aachen University of Applied Sciences has won IMechE’s Railway Challenge 2019, beating 13 other teams from across Europe.

(Credit: IMechE)

The event, now in its eighth year, was held at the Stapleford Miniature Railway in Leicestershire. Teams are tasked with designing and building a locomotive using creativity and technical skill to apply the latest railway technology. The UK was well represented with Transport for London coming second and Ricardo Rail placing third. It was the first time Aachen has taken the tops spot.

“We are participating now for the third time in the Railway Challenge and have continued to make progress each year,” said Robin Muhlmeyer, leader of the Aachen University team.

“This time it was enough for us to take the trophy back with us. It’s always an incredible pleasure to be here at the Stapleford Miniature Railway.”

This year’s innovation challenge was for the teams to build an emergency automatic braking mechanism in their locomotives.

“When I come to this event, I see enthusiastic teams learning in a short period a huge amount about the realities of engineering projects,” said Bill Reeve, head judge of the Railway Challenge and Director of Rail at Transport Scotland. “I also see real innovation in engineering design tested here in a low risk environment. ”

Full results of the Railway Challenge 2019:

Grand Champion: Aachen University of Applied Sciences

Runner up: Transport for London

Third place: Ricardo Rail

Auto stop: Aachen University of Applied Sciences

Noise: Bombardier / University of Derby

Ride Comfort: Aachen University of Applied Sciences

Reliability: University of Sheffield and Bombardier / University of Derby

Innovation: University of Warwick

Design: Transport for London and SNC-Lavalin

Traction: Ricardo Rail

Energy: Aachen University of Applied Sciences

Business Case: Transport for London

Maintainability: Bombardier / University of Derby

Poster: SNC-Lavalin

Poster popular vote: SNC-Lavalin

Special award for ingenuity and elegance in mechanical design: PUTrain University of Poznan