HIMA safety controllers for the rail industry permit fast, easy modification, and offer considerable economic advantages. Among other applications, they are used in locomotives from Reuschling.
For many enterprises in the process industry and rail industry, HIMA is the first contact for reliable safety solutions. The safety specialist is now enhancing its value to the rail sector through additional development capacities and an adapted sales structure.
Across Europe and into Asia, the list of successful HIMA rail projects is growing. Among the projects are railway crossings in Portugal and Australia, door controllers for metro trains in Great Britain and interlockings in Finland, the Netherlands and Turkey. The customer base is also expanding. It includes engineering and planning firms involved in infrastructure projects, transportation companies and manufacturers of locomotives and other rail vehicles. MOVARES, Mipro, Efacec, Reuschling and VRS are just some of the leading enterprises that rely on HIMA solutions.
"HIMA clearly declared its commitment to the rail sector years ago," explains Sankar Ramakrishnan, CEO at HIMA. "Now we want to better utilize our know-how gained from process engineering to achieve even greater synergies for our rail customers."
Head of HIMA’s rail segment since September 2015, Sedat Sezgün is responsible for making sure those synergies happen for customers. He has worked at HIMA for more than 13 years—nine of those years in sales, and has made significant contributions to developing the rail business. "We are already the European market leader in the process industry. Now we want to set a growth course in the rail sector," he says.
"We are already the European market leader in the process industry. Now we want to set a growth course in the rail sector," says Sedat Sezgün, Head of HIMA’s rail segment.
To a great extent, many applications in today’s rail industry consist of proprietary technology that is no longer up to date. Systems developed especially for the rail industry—including interlockings and railway crossings—were and are still very expensive. Alternatives are the so-called commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) systems that are produced in large quantities and used in a variety of industrial applications, and thus are more cost effective.
Dutch consulting and engineering firm Movares was one of HIMA’s first rail sector customers. The PLC interlocking it implemented based on industrial COTS hardware led to approximately 30 percent lower lifecycle costs. Successful implementation of the project resulted in multiple follow-up orders for HIMA. For Reuschling, the Westphalian locomotive factory, COTS safety controllers from HIMA were also the right solution. “We use COTS solutions 100%. Nothing is better and more profitable than using a traditional, developed and finished solution," states CEO Walter Schreiber.
“We use COTS solutions 100%. Nothing is better and more profitable than using a traditional, developed and finished solution," states Walter Schreiber, CEO of Reuschling, the Westphalian locomotive factory.
As COTS products, safety controllers from HIMA provide customers with economic advantages, and they can be optimally adapted to different conditions and customer-specific requirements. This applies for long-distance and regional traffic, as well as for industrial infrastructures and railway crossings for urban transport.
In addition, as Sedat Sezgün points out, "HIMA is the only COTS supplier in the rail segment that can meet—with just a single controller—the SIL 4 requirements specified by CENELEC. Unlike our competitors, HIMA offers products that not only facilitate the certification process for our customers but also provide the best COTS capabilities on the market."
The cost advantages of COTS come from more than just lower hardware costs. Cabling efforts, for example, are significantly reduced because the controllers can be used centrally and in a distributed topology—such as at the railway interlocking and at the remote points where sensors systems and train signaling are located.
For project execution, HIMA can rely on its network of local Group companies and offices at more than 50 locations. Rail sector customers benefit from HIMA’s experience gained from decades of implementing extensive projects for the world's largest companies in the oil, gas, pharmaceutical and energy-production industries. With this expertise and an efficient international sales structure, HIMA delivers customers the multiple advantages of 45-plus years of uncompromising concentration on safety, from consulting and service activities in all lifecycle phases, to customer-tailored products for virtually every application.