Very Light Rail and its value
A vehicle with a weight of less than 1 tonne per linear metre is considered very light weight by current standards. The very light rail (VLR) sector offers a significant opportunity for UK companies to develop new solutions embracing technology transferred from the automotive sector, leading to the growth of a new industry supplying UK and international rail schemes.
VLR offers many advantages over traditional rail systems. These include the following:
- vehicles with low axle weights (around 4 tonnes)
- self-powered vehicles with energy recovery and storage systems as standard
- reduced capital cost and installation time for track infrastructure
- reduced infrastructure operational and maintenance costs
There is great potential for VLR vehicles to be used on disused branch lines across the UK, many of which have been closed since the early 1960s.