Improved maintenance planned for Supertram’s Citylink vehicles

Ever since the Citylink vehicles were introduced into service on the Stagecoach Supertram network there have been reliability issues with, at times, the complete fleet having to be withdrawn from service. But now Stagecoach have joined with Semcon to come up with a new training plan for technicians at the Nunnery Square Depot which it is hoped will improve the reliability of the seven vehicles which not only operate the service to Rotherham Parkgate but are also used on the conventional tram network as well.

The Citylink vehicles use a Controller Area Network (CAN bus) which is a specialised communications network designed to allow microcontrollers and devices to communicate with each other’s applications without a host computer. As part of this new project Semcon will develop a training set-up for service technicians to learn more about the CAN Bus system which is used to control systems such as the doors, heating, ventilation and air conditioning as well as the Master Controller.

Steve Beard, Business Development Manager Rail at Semcon UK, said: “The ability to safely interrogate CAN Bus and Multifunction Vehicle Bus (MVB) enables operators to access valuable data, which may not be available to them directly. Resulting in quicker, improved diagnostics and more reliable maintenance work.”

It is hoped that the introduction of this new training will help to improve the reliability of the seven Citylink vehicles.

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