Sheffield Hallam's 'ice melting railway platforms' project to receive £9.4million of government funding

A Sheffield-based project developing railway station platforms that automatically melt ice has received a share of £9.4 million of Government funding.

Wednesday, 17th June 2020, 7:41 pm

Researchers at Sheffield Hallam University are making concrete slabs with a heating system that switches itself on in freezing conditions to prevent passengers from slipping.

Their design also involves the platform edge being illuminated to give travellers useful information, such as where they can find quieter carriages or the direction of the nearest exit.

The technology is due to be trialled at a UK station within the next nine months.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Ice on a railway platform. Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Rail Safety and Standards Board figures show that 19 people were killed and more than 7,000 were injured in accidents around platform edges on Britain's railways in a recent five-year period.

Casualties include people who were getting on and off trains, and waiting for a train to arrive.

A total of 25 "pioneering" projects have secured funding in the latest round of the Department for Transport's First of a Kind competition.

The winning bids feature a range of ideas, including an app allowing train passengers to switch seat reservations at the last-minute, enabling 5G connections on the rail network and more resilient glazing for train windows.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "I am delighted to announce the winners of this year's First of a Kind competition which will support better, more environmentally friendly journeys.

"Crucially, these pioneering projects will also ensure that passengers have a more efficient, reliable and responsive railway, making their journeys simpler and easier.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription.

Subscribe to The Star website and enjoy unlimited access to local news and information online and on our app. With a digital subscription, you can read more than 5 articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content.

Our journalism costs money and we rely on advertising, print and digital revenues to help to support them. By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.

Thank you

Nancy Fielder, editor