EVRAZ NTMK has successfully passed another stage of the qualification process to supply wheels to North American railways. Based on laboratory tests, the high quality of grade Н36 railway wheels was confirmed by the Association of American Railroads (AAR). On this basis, the North American registrar for the certification of railway transport has issued EVRAZ NTMK with a license to supply a pilot batch of wheels.
EVRAZ NTMK still has to undergo field testing to obtain a permanent license, so will supply the pilot batch of wheels – 32,000 – to North America for testing purposes. They will be installed on freight cars for field testing; up to five thousand cars are expected to be utilized. Testing is considered successful when no defects are found in the wheels upon completion of 300 thousand miles (about 500 thousand km).
"Development of the North American railway market is a strategic goal for EVRAZ NTMK", comments Ilya Shirokobrod, Vice President of EVRAZ, and Head of Railway Products Division. "Owing to the modifications and introduction of new technologies at EVRAZ NTMK, the company now has the opportunity to supply its products to the American and European markets".
The current EVRAZ NTMK product line includes railway wheels for freight and passenger cars, underground trains, special purpose trains, and electric and diesel locomotives. In addition, the company is the only Russian producer of 350-390 HB and 1250 mm wheels for EP-20 high-speed electric passenger locomotives. EVRAZ NTMK is also introducing railway wheels for the high-speed Lastochka locomotives to be used during the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, and has a further 18 types of wheels currently in development.