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Staying cool on the rails: VTG ramps up its temperature-controlled transport offerings with the SWS-PowerBox

Staying cool on the rails: VTG ramps up its temperature-controlled transport offerings with the SWS-PowerBox
photo: VTG/VTG
29 / 06 / 2021

Yet another smart solution on the rails: In the shape of the SWS-PowerBox®, VTG is adding to its offerings to deliver temperature-controlled rail freight transport. Mounted on the wheelset, a hydraulic pump and attached generator produce power while the train is moving. Optimized temperatures can thus be guaranteed for the transportation of fruit, vegetables, meat, fish and medication in reefer containers, swap bodies, tank containers and refrigerated semitrailers. The system was developed by Austrian tech company SWS Power Solutions. “This intelligent solution from SWS Power Solutions lets us provide a service catering to the sustainable transport of sensitive goods. That enhances our offerings to customers, but also further strengthens rail as a mode of transport,” says Jakob Öhrström, Managing Director and Head of the Center of Competence Intermodal at VTG Rail Europe GmbH. “We are continually investing in cutting-edge equipment and delivering top-class solutions to get reefer transports in Europe onto the rails and thereby reinforce the modal shift. Transport by road can be significantly reduced as a result, which will sharply curb CO2 emissions.”

Energy conversion facilitates power supply

The SWS-PowerBox® can be mounted on 80’ and 90’ container wagons or double pocket wagons. Its steel exterior contains the entire power supply system. A hydraulic pump mounted on the wheelset drives a generator, transforming kinetic energy into electrical energy. This electricity is channeled into the temperature power units and charges the battery. The power supply system can thus operate autonomously, drawing no power from the locomotive engine. A permanent, uninterrupted power supply is therefore also ensured even when the wagon is not in motion. At the transshipment terminal or loading sidings, the battery can simply be charged with a type-2 charger plug. CEE plugs are also fitted on every side of the wagon to ensure that all maritime and continental reefer units (refrigerated semi-trailers) can be supplied with electricity in accordance with the loading schedule.

Digital monitoring

In addition, a combination of sensors and telematic features constantly monitors battery capacity, the power supply, and power consumption, as well as handling troubleshooting. The data is fed into the digital traigo platform, where it can be accessed by customers.