Supply Side: Chart Industries/Ballard, Knorr-Bremse/Irdeto, TRAC Intermodal, WabtecWritten by Marybeth Luczak, Executive Editor
Six major companies in the railway and intermodal supply space have reported developments in joint ventures and charitable works.
Chart Industries Inc., and Ballard Power Systems are partnering to develop integrated system solutions, including a fuel cell engine with onboard liquid hydrogen storage and vaporization, for rail, bus, truck and marine applications. Knorr-Bremse subsidiary Selectron Systems has selected digital security firm Irdeto to safeguard the integrity of braking and other rail and commercial vehicle systems for the entire Knorr-Bremse Group. The TRAC Tire Services division of TRAC Intermodal, a marine chassis pool manager and equipment provider, will now exclusively serve the company’s chassis fleet. And Wabtec has donated $30,000 to support Texas storm relief efforts.
Under a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding, Chart and Ballard will collaborate to “enable accelerated adoption of hydrogen in heavy-duty transport applications requiring long range, rapid refueling and lowest total cost of ownership of the vehicle,” according to the companies.
Chart is a provider of technology, equipment and services related to liquefied natural gas, hydrogen, biogas and CO2 capture. It has truck LNG tank experience; an existing liquid hydrogen onboard vehicle tank prototype design; fuel to vehicle connection/interface experience; and a Minnesota-based LH2 test lab. Ballard is a producer of zero-emission proton exchange membrane [PEM] fuel cells, enabling electrification of buses, commercial trucks, trains, marine vessels, passenger cars and forklift trucks. It has market access to system integrators and vehicle OEMs as well as fuel cell testing facilities in British Columbia, Canada, and Denmark.
“Given both of our companies’ extensive experience in the Class 8 long-haul truck, bus rail and marine areas of transportation as well as hydrogen, this combination of expertise will create a unique, differentiated and cost-effective solution for transportation customers as the industry moves to cleaner power,” Chart CEO and President Jill Evanko said.
Irdeto will provide new Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) for the Knorr-Bremse Group. Its Keys & Credentials solution will be used to protect Knorr-Bremse’s safety-critical products—such as Train Control and Management Systems (TCMS) and Electronic Control Units for commercial vehicles—against security threats, ensuring that only authorized users and systems can run them, according to Irdeto. Keys & Credentials will enable the implementation of Identity and Authentication Control (IAC).
“The PKI solution is an important step in our ambition to set new standards for cybersecurity in the connected transport space,” Selectron Systems AG CEO Thomas Fischer said. “We are looking forward to partnering with Irdeto and utilizing its wider range of cybersecurity solutions.” Selectron already integrates Keys & Credentials to “manage the lifecycle of PKI certificates embedded in its products, blocking hackers and cybercriminals from accessing vital train systems.”
The TRAC Tire Services division, which handles tire retreading, will now exclusively serve TRAC Intermodal’s chassis fleet. The division and its partner Goodyear use “rigorous quality control and proprietary compounded intermodal rubber to improve performance and minimize tread-wear,” according to the company.
“With this conversion, we gain greater control over the production and tire quality of our chassis fleet, accessing the innovative technology of Goodyear products,” TRAC Intermodal President and CEO Daniel Walsh said. “In addition, we’re taking a proactive approach to sustainable business practices, using radial tire conversion and retreading programs to help reduce our overall environmental impact.”
In the wake of the recent Texas storm, the Wabtec Foundation is supporting three area nonprofits: Salvation Army of North Texas, Tarrant Area Food Bank, and the Tarrant County Homeless Coalition. Wabtec has more than 1,200 employees across multiple Texas sites, including a Fort Worth-based locomotive plant.
“As an active member of North Texas, we are committed to supporting the communities where our employees live and work,” Wabtec Chief Human Resource Officer Nicole Theophilus said. The storm, she noted, “left our employees and our communities hurting and without the basic services we depend on every day. As hundreds of thousands of Texans continue to deal with the lingering impacts of the storm, far too many will need shelter and food to thrive. Through this donation, we hope they find comfort and relief.”