The IMechE Railway Challenge is designed for teams of engineering students studying at a UK university or apprentices working in industry. They are required to design and manufacture a miniature (10¼” gauge) railway locomotive in accordance with a set of rules and a technical specification. At the end of each year, a competition weekend will be held at Stapleford Miniature Railway in Leicestershire at which the teams will compete against each other to test their locomotive designs and determine a winning team for that year.
The competition is organised by the Railway Division of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. A successful pilot of the challenge was held in the 2011-12 academic year in which four teams took part. For more information please read IMechE goes Loco article by David Shirres.
In the 2012-13 academic year the challenge is open to teams from any UK university or railway company. The competition dates are Friday 28 June to Sunday 30 June 2013. Teams intending to participate should enter in accordance with the details given below.
For the purpose of the Railway Challenge competition, teams will assume that they work for a design consultancy producing a locomotive for a large corporation. They will design and manufacture the prototype of this locomotive and they will then test this against prototypes manufactured by the other teams. The challenges are as follows:
Track Based challenges:
- Energy Storage Challenge
- Traction Challenge
- Ride Comfort Challenge
- Design Challenge
- Business Case Challenge
Full details are given in the Railway Challenge Rules and Technical Specification available for download from the team guidance section of this site.
How to Enter
To enter a team for the 2013 Railway Challenge please email email@example.com and include the following information: your University or company, Team Supervisor and your Team Leader (names, job titles where applicable, full postal address, email addresses, telephone and mobile numbers).
Teams will be notified if they have been accepted within one week of submitting their application. The cost for taking part in the Railway Challenge is £300 + VAT (for up to 10 team members plus a supervisor). Additional team members will be charged £35 + VAT (up to a maximum of 10 additional members). Payment will only be requested once teams are notified that they have been successfully registered.
Why get involved?
The Railway Challenge will provide teams of young engineers with experience of design and manufacture of a prototype vehicle. A structured environment will be provided with academic and industry mentors and a fairly risk free but representative environment in which to develop key engineering skills.
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Winning the inaugural Railway Challenge competition was a tremendous affirmation of the world-class graduate scheme that Interfleet runs. The year-long programme enabled us to put team work, technology and innovation into practice in a most inspiring way, and to experience first hand the challenges that rolling stock design faces.
Stephen Head, Team Captain
Interfleet RC Team 2012
The final judging and assessment is carried out at Stapleford Miniature Railway in Leicestershire. The 2013 competition weekend will be on 29 and 30 June. It is free for spectators to come along to watch. Please email Rachel Pearson, Project Manager for the Railway Challenge, to reserve your place
Click here to reserve your spectator place.
If you have any queries regarding the Railway Challenge please email the rules committee at firstname.lastname@example.org