SCX innovates platform screen door installation on the Crossrail project

18th September 2017

Sheffield specialist engineering firm SCX is supporting Westinghouse Platform Screen Doors (WPSD), a division of Knorr-Bremse UK Rail, in optimising the installation of their platform screen system on the Crossrail project.

The mechanical handling rig, devised by SCX Special Projects’ world-class engineers for rail systems contractor Knorr-Bremse, has helped to transform the installation process and generate significant benefits.

SCX's innovative lifting rig simplifies platform screen door installation © SCX / Crossrail

SCX worked closely with WPSD to design and build the rig, resulting in increased efficiencies, including time and cost savings. The solution has earned widespread praise for SCX’s engineering excellence.

Platform screen doors are being installed at the eight new underground stations on the Crossrail project. They protect passengers from the track and train, creating a quieter and cleaner platform environment and economical air-conditioning.

Installation of the platform door modules needs to be performed from the track, rather than a conventional ‘on platform’ construction. The SCX rig facilitates fast, accurate and safe mounting of complete door modules onto the platform, as well as being easy to operate.

One of the key engineering challenges was the limited amount of space in which the mechanical handling system had to operate. The rigs delivered by the SCX Special Projects team are of an extremely compact design, yet more than capable of the task.

The rigs had to offer excellent reliability and flexibility too. In the region of 500 door modules are to be installed, ranging from 5.5 to 6.3 metres in length, and 1.5 to 2.0 tons in weight.

The BBC filmed the installation process for their prime time ‘The One Show’ in May 2017, showing the SCX rigs in operation. Presenter Marty Jopson described the rig in action as, ‘a thing of beauty’: praise indeed!

A rendering of the Crossrail screen doors before installation © SCX / Crossrail

Knorr-Bremse project manager Robert Harker, commenting on the rig technology, said:

“SCX Special Projects has worked closely with us and delivered a solution which demonstrates ingenuity and engineering excellence. The quality and functionality of the rigs are outstanding and they are proving easy to operate on site.”

Danny Pickard, lead engineer at SCX Special Projects, adds:

“Our clients tend to have one thing in common: a unique and complex mechanical handling problem, which needs an engineering solution. In looking to solve those problems we innovate in every area of the design, whether that’s mechanical, electrical, controls, structural or safety.

Danny continues:

“SCX’s mechanical handling expertise encompasses the entire process from concept design, to fabrication and assembly, right through to final installation. The brief from WPSD/Knorr-Bremse touched on all of those disciplines. It’s a real pleasure to work with a client like WPSD/Knorr-Bremse, and a genuine privilege to play our part in the success of the London Crossrail project.”


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SCX Special Projects Ltd

Roman Ridge Road, Sheffield, S9 1GA, United Kingdom

t:  +44 (0)114 262 6199