The UK is set to benefit from a more efficient, greener and cleaner rail network thanks to £7.8 million worth of funding for innovative projects.
This is thanks to investment awarded through the third round of the First of a Kind (FOAK) competition, with recipients confirmed by the Department for Transport (DfT).
Funded by the DfT and run by Innovate UK, the competition ultimately supports research, development and innovation within the UK rail industry by seeking innovative ideas to transform rail travel.
This competition has previously funded innovative projects that look to accelerate the reduction in carbon footprint on Britain’s railways, and this latest round of investment will benefit 24 projects that provide ideas to ensure a greener and cleaner rail network.
After the third round of funding was announced, Rail Minister Andrew Jones, said: “The First of a Kind competition has consistently produced truly innovative projects developed for the benefit of passengers, helping to drive forward a greener, cleaner and more efficient rail network.
“This round has been the biggest yet and I am excited to see how our funding will bring these ambitious ideas to fruition.
“This government is also investing £48 billion to modernise our rail network over the next five years, ensuring people have the safe, frequent and punctual journeys they deserve.”
Each of the winning schemes chosen that will create a greener and cleaner rail network will receive between £250,000 and £350,000 in funding; for the third round of funding, strengthening the resilience of railway infrastructure and operations, reducing environmental impacts and enhancing rail freight services were all themes.
One of the projects awarded funding includes plans for the first testing of a hydrogen-powered train, which will help to reduce pollution, improve air quality and be a positive force for the environment.
The third round of funding for this competition now means approximately £15 million has been allocated to projects to improve the rail sector.