FRP in Railways:

Composites are being widely used in the mass – transportation sector. In the mass-transportation sector, railways are one of the major segments and composite plays a major role in improving the efficiency of the railway transport system.

Factors that make composites important:

  • high strength to weight ratio, making the coaches lighter and leading to less fuel consumption,
  • Due to Excellent Corrosion resistance the maintenance is less and an improved product life cycle
  • Reduction in vibration and noise level leads to increased passenger’s comfort
  • Ease of fabrication of Aerodynamic structures

Composite Products in Railways

Some of the products, developed by Indian companies for the railways are as follows with their inherent advantages:

  • FRP Modular Toilet for Coaches

It is light weight, non-corrosive, easy to assemble. The FRP panels are not affected by water and hence provide longer life cycle.

  • Coach Furnishings

A variety of FRP Mouldings specifically designed for coaches include parts like side panels, roof panels, main door, berth lights, window frames, inner frames etc.

  • FRP Moulded Inner Frame

Used in the windows of Air-Conditioned Coaches of Indian Railways. These products are light weight with low thermal conductivity (as compared to aluminium) thus help in enhancement of air conditioning efficiency as well as energy efficiency.

  • FRP Main Door

These doors do not rust in spite of remaining in contact with water for a prolonged period. Rusting is a chronic problem with conventional mild steel (MS) doors.

  • Bio Toilets

Easy to assemble/ dissemble, light weight, sturdy and non-corrosive.

Global trends

Composites are finding wider acceptance in Europe and North America and other developed countries. Sandwich composites, in particular, are getting lots of attention in recent years.

Orson’s Development for Resins used in Mass Transit Industry.

Orson Chemicals has developed a “Halogen free fire retardant (FR) thermosetting unsaturated polyester resin™ and Gelcoats” for composites applications in the mass transit industry. Using a latest advanced performance fibre reinforced plastic (FRP) laminate and resin matched systems, FRP composite parts can be cost effectively fabricated that meets stringent FSTL Standards i.e. Fire, Smoke parameters as per UIC 564-2, Toxicity Index parameter as per NCD 1409 and Limiting Oxygen Index (LOI) parameter as per ASTM D2863 standard, for a wide variety of composite rail and infrastructure applications, offering a very good UV weathering in addition to a very good FSTL performance.

The outstanding behaviour of Orson Chemicals™ Fire Retardant Resins and Gelcoats includes, Less Flame Spread or short burn lengths and Less Deterioration of Visibility due to smoke, achieving a CLASS A category as per UIC 564-2 standard. The toxicity index offered by the company’s resin and gelcoat is at 0.56, which is well below the maximum allowed level of 1, indicating very less emission of toxic gases on combustion. It also offers a high LOI of 35 percent, which means a high amount of atmospheric oxygen is required to support combustion.”

Orson Resins & Gelcoats

Non-Halogenated Fire-Retardant Isophthalate Resin for Railways Application:  ORCHEM™ 915

  • Low Smoke Volume
  • High Resistance to Fire
  • Excellent Mechanical Properties
  • Exhibits Self Extinguish Properties

Non-Halogenated Fire-Retardant Orthophthalate Resin for Railways Application:  ORCHEM™ 226

  • Rapid Cure
  • Low Toxicity (0.56)
  • Excellent Surface Finish
  • Exhibits Low Flammability
  • Fast Wet Out of Reinforcement

Non-Halogenated Fire-Retardant Isophthalate Resin Gelcoat for Railways Application: ORGEL™ 510

  • Good Toughness and Weathering Resistance
  • Hugh Gloss
  • Resistance to Ultra Violet Rays
  • Exceptional Consistency

Pre-Accelerated Clear Granular Sprayable Isophthalate Gelcoat: ORGEL™ 501 C G S PA

  • Resistance to Hydrolysis
  • Excellent Gloss Retention
  • Compatible with special type of Granules used for mosaic finish with sprayable gelcoat