Reliable and well-maintained infrastructure is needed for passenger and freight trains to reach their destinations safely, and a key part of this infrastructure includes reliable and resilient railway batteries that power trains and rail systems, says battery manufacturer First National Battery.
“First National Battery develops and distributes train lighting batteries and diesel starter batteries which are low maintenance and long lasting,” says MD Murray Long, who highlights that “railway batteries should feature a reliable plate design, which is essential to ensure maximum safety at signalling stations”.
Railway signalling stations need to operate even during a surge or power failure and need batteries to direct trains by shifting tracks or interlocking safety systems, he explains, noting that the company’s plate design batteries have to be trustworthy.
“Our design and technology make it possible for railway batteries to power rail signalling for up to 12 years," he adds.
For many South African passengers, trains can be cost-effective and a less stressful way of travelling long-distance, with luxuries such as lighting and hot running water. For these amenities to function correctly at all times, robust batteries with an extended life are required.
Additionally, as more industries take note of their carbon footprint, rail transport is becoming more important as a green alternative and is cleaner and reduces road traffic.
However, the rail industry continues to struggle as its infrastructure needs repairs and replacement.
“What's great about the lead-acid batteries we develop for rail transport, is that 95% of the battery is recycled to produce new batteries,” Long states.