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Chinese National Rail Transit Electrification and Automation Engineering Technology Research Centre (Hong Kong Branch) (CNERC-Rail) was established at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) by the State Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) in October 2015. 

The Hong Kong Branch of Chinese National Rail Transit Electrification and Automation Engineering Technology Research Center (CNERC-Rail) was established with visions of rail technical innovation and translational research in conjunction with high speed rail (HSR) enterprises, striving for resolutions to pressing technical problems in the railway industry and advancing China’s HSR. The approval of our centre by MOST is a recognition of the R&D capability of our research team as well as our successful technology transfer experiences in the areas of rail engineering. Our centre will work closely with mainland counterparts, and leverage on the respective strengths of both sides to work on research and development projects conducive to both the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong.

CNERC-Rail derives encouraging support from the reception of a yearly maximum funding of HK$ 5 million from the Innovation and Technology Commission of the HKSAR government (ITC) and a dollar- for -dollar matching fund from the PolyU. The funding support from ITC was HK$ 10 million since 2019, and has been increased to HK$ 20 million starting from 2022. PolyU has been responsible for the development of three laboratories under the CNERC-Rail’s name. They are:

Research Laboratory for High-Speed Rail Traction Power System and Safety Technology

  • R&D of electromagnetic compatibility and protection technology for high-speed rail traction system
  • R&D of smart devices and electricity condition monitoring technologies

Research Laboratory for Advanced Sensing Techniques for High-Speed Rail Monitoring

  • R&D of smart devices and electricity condition monitoring technologies
  • R&D of an integrated monitoring system for high-speed rail based on advanced wireless communication technology
  • R&D of advanced piezoelectric sensing technology based damage detection of high-speed rail track

Research Laboratory for Condition Monitoring and Vibration Control of High-Speed Trains

  • R&D of online monitoring and evaluation system for high-speed trains in operation
  • R&D of intelligent vibration control technology development for high-speed trains

CNERC-Rail is now equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and top-notch research personnel. Proactive in building collaboration with various Chinese HSR enterprises, it also actively develops an international network by inviting world renowned academics and professionals to speak at its seminars/workshops.

Specifically, CNERC-Rail strives to contribute to the development of rail transit in China and Hong Kong as follows:

  • Adopt cutting-edge monitoring technologies in the operational monitoring of high speed railway system, vehicle system and traction system;
  • Enhance the standards of operational monitoring system in high speed railway industry;
  • Standardize operation of technologies;
  • Commercialize innovative technologies;
  • Increase international engagement in Chinese high speed railway development and facilitate its international exposure; and
  • Nurture high-calibre professionals and specialists with advanced technologies and a global vision.

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