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Network Rail has approved Bender UK’s next generation RS4 Rail Signalling Power Protection system that delivers increased sensitivity for first earth fault location and enables compliance with Network Rail’s Insulation Monitoring and Fault Location requirements.

The new RS4 employs tried and trusted Bender technology to deliver the multiple-tier smart cable insulation monitoring. RS4 Tier 3 has increased sensitivity for improved feeder first fault location from the 20kΩ pre‑warning level to 100KΩ or higher, depending on system capacitance. It has improved performance of Bender’s already proven RS systems to offer a holistic picture of cable health, along with a rich data set that meets the requirements of standard NR/L2/SIGELP/27725.

The Certificate of Acceptance (PA05/04750) confirms Network Rail’s acceptance Bender’s Tier 3 RS4 which makes it simple for new devices and upgrades to be procured. The Tier 1 and 2 versions are also undergoing final testing to also achieve certification.

The retrofittable RS4 solution can upgrade existing RS2/RS3 installations in less than an hour without disconnection.  It offers cost-effective continuation for legacy equipment that is compatible with existing Intelligent Infrastructure remote condition monitoring through GSM‑enabled data loggers.

Bender’s Tier 2 solution provides full insulation resistance levels of individual feeders with increased system visibility at minimal extra cost over Tier 3 technology and is fully upgradeable to deliver a Tier 1 solution.

The RS4 Tier 1 provides full insulation resistance levels of individual cable subsections and within FSP’s (Functional Supply Points).  It also offers the flexibility to deliver tailor-made solutions on a project-by-project basis. It is fully retrofittable and compact for utilisation within SIN119 remedial works.  No 650V or earth reference connection for FSP installations is required, meaning the 650V power supply doesn’t need to be shut-down during install.  That ensures Bender’s Tier 1 solution is fully class 2 compliant and does not compromise the integrity of Class 2 enclosures or create risk of electric shock injury to personnel.

The RS4 has customised data and communication options enabling project customisation that can be integrated into existing Intelligent Infrastructure. Trackside equipment can be incorporated into existing FSP architecture and the Tier 1 solution offers remote fault location to FSP or cable length, with precise manual fault finding at 100KΩ.

Alongside enhanced sensitivity for ‘first earth fault’ location RS4 measures capacitance, voltage and frequency delivering data within the standard display options to provide more information to help assess the health of the system.

RS4 continually monitors insulation values to show real-time status of the power system. When the insulation value (IR) drops the system records the fault and a test current signal or pulse put into the system is pulled to earth at the point where the fault exists.

Portable Bender equipment can be employed trackside for measuring and analysing sections of the power network to prioritise installation programmes. Recent improvements to the portable kit include more sensitive clamps and receiver technology to deliver exact fault location up to 100kΩ. Self-powered through connection to the trackside signal electrical network and delivering live monitoring of the system status, the portable fault location equipment can also provide independent verification of RS system performance.

The RS4 Tier 3 PADs database number is 0086/001406.  Individual PADS have also been applied to Bender components to deliver cost effective product upgrades.

Bender UK has a proven track record with over 1,000 rail power insulation monitoring systems installed across UK rail networks over the last two decades.

Further information contact Tony Edwards, Rail Business Manager at Bender UK or visit the website:

Bender UK is a subsidiary of Bender GmbH – a global, independent company established in the 1940s by Walter Bender. The family owned company has 80 offices worldwide, with headquarters and state of the art production facilities in Grunberg, Germany.

Bender is involved in the innovative design and manufacture of quality electrical safety solutions, serving a range of market sectors delivering solutions which identify electrical faults before they become critical. Key markets include defence, oil, gas and mining, manufacturing, data centres, electric vehicles, rail and healthcare.

Cumbrian based Bender UK is responsible for sales, project management, installation and through-life technical support of Bender products in the UK and Ireland.  The Bender UK team work with leading OEMs, consultants, engineers and end-users to deliver solutions which monitor, forewarn and locate developing insulation failure in complex electrical systems.

Bender UK works in key market sectors, to prevent loss of power and shut-down:

Industrial: Residual current monitoring and power quality management devices monitor electrical networks, plant, and buildings to ensure that they are electrically safe. Bender systems provide a continuous health check on electrical systems delivering far-reaching and cost-effective benefits by predicting when and where issues will occur, tracking power usage to identify potential energy savings.

E-Mobility: Bender is a world leader in the application of safety solutions for charge stations and operating systems for hybrid and electric vehicles.  Collaborating with major manufacturers on passenger, transport and commercial vehicle projects, Bender supplies compliant charge station technologies and insulation monitoring for new generation vehicles.

Rail: An approved supplier to Network Rail, Bender UK technology monitors and protects trackside power supplies and signal systems across the UK, identifying and locating electrical faults, anticipating failure to enable predictive and preventive maintenance, keeping rail networks moving.

Oil, Gas and subsea: Effective management of offshore, on-shore and oil and gas infrastructure is facilitated by Bender line insulation monitoring equipment to prevent downtime and loss of production. Bender also collaborates with OEMs on bespoke offshore and sub-sea applications, utilising certified engineers to conduct fault finding analysis, health surveys and commissioning.

Defence: Complex systems on board Royal Navy surface ships and Astute-class submarines are protected by Bender technology to identify and locate earth faults and help prevent electrical failure.

Healthcare: In the UK and Ireland, Bender is market leader in turnkey healthcare solutions, delivering critical care power systems to protect staff and patients from loss of power in hospitals.   Bender also supplies clinical equipment including high performance Merivaara LED surgical lighting and operating tables, infection-reducing touch screen control panels, and clinical services pendants, backed up by 24/7 service, call-out and technical support support to over 400 hospitals.

From off-the-shelf products, to highly customised systems Bender is a supplier of choice to deliver world-class services for critical infrastructure applications.

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