SNCF’s experience in installing telecom cables with CableRail® from the SITS France group

SNCF’s experience in installing telecom cables with CableRail® from the SITS France group

SNCF’s experience in installing telecom cables with CableRail® from the SITS France group

Michel Combes, engineering manager for the deployment of telecom cables at SNCF Réseau, the French railways’ infrastructure company

installation de câble

 

For the last 12 years, I have been responsible for an engineering design group at SNCF Réseau for the deployment of long-distance telecommunication cables on the French national railway network. This group defines directives for the laying of telecom cables, approves construction contractors, delivers technical approvals for machines and participates in the development of framework contracts.

The preceding five years, I was a Validation Engineer at a telecom operator that was then an SNCF subsidiary and today belongs to SFR Numéricâble. This operator had overall responsibility for the deployment of the fibre-optic network on railway property.

My 42 years’ experience in the domain of telecom cables have enabled me to monitor both the different technological trends and the different needs of customers, especially those of the telephone operator ORANGE and other major French groups such as ERDF, SNCF and motorway operators.

Michel Combes, engineering manager for the deployment of telecom cables at SNCF Réseau, the French railways’ infrastructure company

installation de câble

For the last 12 years, I have been responsible for an engineering design group at SNCF Réseau for the deployment of long-distance telecommunication cables on the French national railway network. This group defines directives for the laying of telecom cables, approves construction contractors, delivers technical approvals for machines and participates in the development of framework contracts.

The preceding five years, I was a Validation Engineer at a telecom operator that was then an SNCF subsidiary and today belongs to SFR Numéricâble. This operator had overall responsibility for the deployment of the fibre-optic network on railway property.

My 42 years’ experience in the domain of telecom cables have enabled me to monitor both the different technological trends and the different needs of customers, especially those of the telephone operator ORANGE and other major French groups such as ERDF, SNCF and motorway operators.

SITS France: an expert in the installation of telecom cables

Among the companies with which I was in contact over these years, the group SITS France stands out in terms of its competence and technical capabilities. SITS have more than 40 years’ experience in laying cables, and particularly telecom cables, on railway property.

SITS possess all the qualifications required to carry out construction and installation work for telecom cables on the French national railway network. These qualifications are bestowed and confirmed by the SNCF process and published annually in the Official Journal of the European Union. In this context, SITS’s machines possess permits in the form of Certificats d’Aptitude Technique (CATs) and enable conformity with the implementation directives specific to SNCF Réseau.

In parallel, multi-year contacts enable construction companies like the group SITS France to position themselves both financially and technically to perform work and to propose technological changes and innovations.

Installing telecom cables: a technical challenge

Among the SITS machines holding a CAT are the systems CableRail Sub for the burial of cables and CableRail Surface for installing cables in troughs. In the context of the deployment of fibre-optic cables on French railway property and particularly for the construction of networks for the operator SFR and others (13,000 km) and for the renewal and investment projects of SNCF Réseau (19,000 km), the entities managing construction and lead contractors have made use of the CableRail systems of SITS every time the configuration of worksites and the business case allowed it.

The benefits of these unique systems are numerous. Foremost among these is complete automation of the installation of the trough and/or cables including, in one pass for CableRail Sub and in two passes for CableRail Surface, depending on the project, the transport of all materials on the train, trough-trench creation, installation of troughs or telecom cables and complete finishing work.

This means shorter track occupation times and simpler safety measures, fewer people than on traditional worksites, no machines or materials alongside the track, fewer risks of muscular or skeletal problems for workers and more generally fewer worksite health and safety risks.

From a technical viewpoint, CableRail Sub and CableRail Surface have been designed in conformity with the implementation directives of SNCF Réseau, in particular concerning distances to the track, burial depths, trough alignment, curve radii and the protection and positioning of telecom cables.

More generally, these systems help installations attain a high level of quality.

SITS France: an expert in the installation of telecom cables

Among the companies with which I was in contact over these years, the group SITS France stands out in terms of its competence and technical capabilities. SITS have more than 40 years’ experience in laying cables, and particularly telecom cables, on railway property.

SITS possess all the qualifications required to carry out construction and installation work for telecom cables on the French national railway network. These qualifications are bestowed and confirmed by the SNCF process and published annually in the Official Journal of the European Union. In this context, SITS’s machines possess permits in the form of Certificats d’Aptitude Technique (CATs) and enable conformity with the implementation directives specific to SNCF Réseau.

In parallel, multi-year contacts enable construction companies like the group SITS France to position themselves both financially and technically to perform work and to propose technological changes and innovations.

Installing telecom cables: a technical challenge

Among the SITS machines holding a CAT are the systems CableRail Sub for the burial of cables and CableRail Surface for installing cables in troughs. In the context of the deployment of fibre-optic cables on French railway property and particularly for the construction of networks for the operator SFR and others (13,000 km) and for the renewal and investment projects of SNCF Réseau (19,000 km), the entities managing construction and lead contractors have made use of the CableRail systems of SITS every time the configuration of worksites and the business case allowed it.

The benefits of these unique systems are numerous. Foremost among these is complete automation of the installation of the trough and/or cables including, in one pass for CableRail Sub and in two passes for CableRail Surface, depending on the project, the transport of all materials on the train, trough-trench creation, installation of troughs or telecom cables and complete finishing work.

This means shorter track occupation times and simpler safety measures, fewer people than on traditional worksites, no machines or materials alongside the track, fewer risks of muscular or skeletal problems for workers and more generally fewer worksite health and safety risks.

From a technical viewpoint, CableRail Sub and CableRail Surface have been designed in conformity with the implementation directives of SNCF Réseau, in particular concerning distances to the track, burial depths, trough alignment, curve radii and the protection and positioning of telecom cables.

More generally, these systems help installations attain a high level of quality.

The advantages of the CableRail machines

 

CableRail Sub, the newest addition to the CableRail family, allows – in a single pass – a complete and highly automated installation of cables or HDPE tubes for fibre optics. At the same time, it reduces the required number of people and the duration of their work. Also, CableRail Sub allows a very high installation speed and work in complete safety, has minimal impact on the track structure (without track destabilisation or ballast pollution), leaves only minimal excavation residue and avoids the constraints that obstacles along the track can create.

The ideal use case for the CableRail systems is along a closed line and particularly a high-speed line under construction, where constraints due to train movements and electrification are minimal.

Nevertheless, in the case of lines in operation, the CableRail technology shortens track possessions, limits the number of required road access points and movements of heavy equipment along the tracks, and eliminates the placement of materials along the track with its attendant risks. The speed at which the CableRail system can be deployed and activated, then stowed at the end of a work session, enable its use on the French national railway network even for short work periods on lines in operation.

SNCF Réseau, in its telecom domain, is fully satisfied and convinced by the CableRail Sub and CableRail Surface machines, which complement each other and can cover most needs for the installation of telecom cables while still using the same basic work train.

CableRail is thus a technology for laying telecom cables that is perfectly adapted to the railway and its environment.

For this reason, from the viewpoint of telecom cable installation, CableRail can offer operators outside France the same advantages as those currently benefitting SNCF Réseau.

 

Michel Combes
Section manager
SNCF Réseau
ENGINEERING & PROJECTS DIVISION
TELECOMMICATIONS AND TRANSMISSION MEANS DEPARTMENT

The advantages of the CableRail machines

 

CableRail Sub, the newest addition to the CableRail family, allows – in a single pass – a complete and highly automated installation of cables or HDPE tubes for fibre optics. At the same time, it reduces the required number of people and the duration of their work. Also, CableRail Sub allows a very high installation speed and work in complete safety, has minimal impact on the track structure (without track destabilisation or ballast pollution), leaves only minimal excavation residue and avoids the constraints that obstacles along the track can create.

The ideal use case for the CableRail systems is along a closed line and particularly a high-speed line under construction, where constraints due to train movements and electrification are minimal.

Nevertheless, in the case of lines in operation, the CableRail technology shortens track possessions, limits the number of required road access points and movements of heavy equipment along the tracks, and eliminates the placement of materials along the track with its attendant risks. The speed at which the CableRail system can be deployed and activated, then stowed at the end of a work session, enable its use on the French national railway network even for short work periods on lines in operation.

SNCF Réseau, in its telecom domain, is fully satisfied and convinced by the CableRail Sub and CableRail Surface machines, which complement each other and can cover most needs for the installation of telecom cables while still using the same basic work train.

CableRail is thus a technology for laying telecom cables that is perfectly adapted to the railway and its environment.

For this reason, from the viewpoint of telecom cable installation, CableRail can offer operators outside France the same advantages as those currently benefitting SNCF Réseau.

 

Michel Combes
Section manager
SNCF Réseau
ENGINEERING & PROJECTS DIVISION
TELECOMMICATIONS AND TRANSMISSION MEANS DEPARTMENT