Porterbrook wins Innovate UK funding for Class 170 emissions reduction trial

Porterbrook has secured funding for trial fitment of emissions reduction technology on one of its most widely operated Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) fleets.

The £400k funding will see a Porterbrook Class 170 ‘Turbostar’ train, operated by East Midlands Railway (EMR), fitted with Eminox SCRT® technology.

The objective of the trial is to evaluate whether this technology can deliver reduced CO, particulate matter, hydrocarbons and NOx emissions from these particular diesel trains, making them more environmentally friendly and offering improved air quality to passengers, staff and the communities served by EMR.

Porterbrook’s deployment of this technology is being supported by the Department for Transport, through a £400k grant via Innovate UK’s first-of-a-kind funding (‘FoaK4’).

The EMR trial builds on the recent successful trial of Eminox catalytic-converter technology on South Western Railway Class 159 DMU serving the London-Salisbury-Exeter route.

Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris said: “The success of this trial in reducing harmful emissions underlines the importance of the First of a Kind competition, which funds pioneering projects to support better, more environmentally friendly rail journeys.

“Reducing the railway’s environmental impact and supporting decarbonisation is a priority for this Government. Harnessing innovation like this will be crucial in making our railways greener and cleaner in the future.”

Mary Grant, CEO of Porterbrook, said: “As a rolling stock asset management business, Porterbrook takes seriously its responsibility to develop innovative ways of reducing emissions. We are particularly pleased to be able to do this by drawing on proven technologies.

“Porterbrook believes by partnering with our customer East Midlands Railway and after-treatment specialists, Eminox, we can accelerate the delivery of cleaner and more environmentally friendly trains to Britain’s railways.”

Neil Bamford, Fleet Director at East Midlands Railway, said: “We are pleased to be working with Porterbrook on this exciting new trial. If successful, it could enable our fleet of 170s to run in a more environmentally friendly way and provide benefits to our passengers, staff and the communities we serve.”

The equipment installation on the EMR trains is expected to take place in early 2021 with the trials taking place over the course of three months.

Once the trial is complete this innovation is likely to be deployed on a number of Class170 fleets serving communities across Britain’s railway.

Porterbrook will be working with Eminox, Bosch Rexroth and DG8 to install and monitor this cutting-edge technology.