designed and delivered by TDI

Working with strategic partners, TDI and its sister company 'TDI Production Services Ltd' is able to provide a range of 'turnkey' sustainable transit solutions according to individual customer requirements, environmental, operational and commercial constraints.



  • Revolution VLR

    'Revolution VLR' is a consortium, led by TDI, which is dedicated to the development of next generation, 'very light rail' technology. A key aim of the project is to facilitate low cost connectivity of regional and rural areas. TDI, who is already leading the field in the design of lighter, 'light rail' vehicles, believes that such an approach is fundamental to the provision of integrated and sustainable, short range public transport systems both now and in the future. In November 2013, the Consortium was successful in winning financial support from EIT (the RSSB Future Railway Enabling Innovation Team funded by the DfT) for developing a unique self-powered bogie with an integral, hybrid propulsion system and kinetic energy recovery system. Following the award of a further grant from the RSSB and new investment from Eversholt Rail and other partners, Phase 2 of the project now continues with the development of a complete, 18m long diesel-battery, hybrid vehicle. The 'Revolution' demonstrator railcar will be available for testing and trials on a suitable test track in 2020. TDI is supported by: Cummins, Eversholt Rail, Prose AG, RDM Group, Transcal Engineering and WMG (University of Warwick) who together form the 'Revolution VLR Consortium'.

  • Bespoke Light Rail

    Working in partnership, TDI and Severn Lamb designed and supplied their first purpose-built, light rail train in 2011. This two car unit is powered by a wayside conductor rail and operates a shuttle service along a short section of track at ‘Al Hoota Caves’ near the capital city Muscat (lower image) in the Sultanate of Oman. Following on from this in the summer of 2015, a second, standard gauge vehicle type was developed for a private operator in central Turkey. The award winning 'ULR Express' is a bi-directional, 18m long, diesel-electric railcar with 66 seats and an overall maximum carrying capacity of 120. Operating at speeds up to 65kph, it has a 3% gradient capability and can turn comfortably on a 50m radius.

  • Single Axle Running Gear

    In November 2016, TDI was awarded £830,000 towards the development of a single axle running gear solution originally proposed for the company's 'Foresee' train concept which received early feasibility funding under the RSSB's 'Tomorrow's Train' programme back in 2014. Foresee proposes the use of substantially shorter carriages, circa 6.5m in length and manufactured using lightweight composites, to address the '4C challenge' laid down by DfT. This latest award is funding a two year project involving the design, manufacture and testing, under laboratory conditions, of a demonstrator rolling chassis. The project is being supported by the following partner organisations: ÅF Digital Solutions AB, Arogus International, Huddersfield University, Prose AG, Royal Institute of Technology Stockholm, Tikab and Transcal Engineering.

  • Personal Rapid Transit

    Since 2005, TDI has been a technical partner of Vectus Ltd, a Korean owned company dedicated to the development of world leading PRT technology. TDI's core involvement in the project has been the design, production engineering and prototyping of the cabins themselves, the first examples of which underwent extensive trials on a purpose built test track in Sweden between 2007-2010. Forty production vehicles are due to enter service by the end of 2013 on the first fully commercial Vectus system recently constructed in Suncheon Bay, South Korea. Vectus is in effect an intelligent, automated people mover (APM) which meets all the safety and operational standards required of a traditional rail-based transit system. PRT is not designed to compete with large public transport services such as metros or commuter rail systems; rather it is designed to enhance and improve the viability of such networks by providing feeder lines and links into areas where ‘heavy rail’ would otherwise be too expensive to install and operate. PRT can also provide the ‘last mile’ of transportation, for example, from a busy railway station, which might otherwise involve a taxi ride or a bus. As the vehicles are small-scale and lightweight, they can be carried on a much smaller, (ideally elevated) track infrastructure, requiring minimal ground take and reduced power consumption. In terms of carrying capacity, Vectus is arguably the most cost effective public-transit solution in comparison with monorail or light rail system, for moving up to around ten thousand passengers per hour. TDI is the appointed sales agency for all UK projects.

  • Minitram GRT Systems

    Minitrams are state-of-the-art, light urban transit vehicles (sometimes known as Group Rapid Transit) designed to operate in town/city centres, visitor attractions, airports, exhibition sites and park-and-ride applications. The Minitram technology seeks to offer the system characteristics normally associated with conventional rail-based tram networks through the flexibility and cost effectiveness of automotive and commercial vehicle technology, combined with a concealed (below ground) wire guidance technology called 'Safeguide'. Safeguide ensures accurate navigation along narrow transit corridors - just like invisible rails - and precise docking at stops/platforms and stations. This is especially relevant in historic town centres, where conventional bus lanes or tram lines would be impractical. Using this system, the vehicles can be driven in fully automatic mode (on segregated alignments only), semi- automatically or even manually with a driver where no guideway exists. Minitram GRT systems are significantly cheaper than a conventional tram or light rapid transit system and do not require intrusive infrastructure such as overhead wires or electrified rails. The vehicles are small scale and can travel along roadways with shared occupancy, dedicated alignments, through pedestrian areas and even indoors within shopping centres or other building complexes. Running every few minutes, a fleet of Minitrams can provide a continuous orbital service around any congested town or city centre. By virtue of Safeguide, they are able to navigate precisely within dedicated transit lanes on an existing highway or else along dedicated, paved alignments and in pedestrian areas. The core service can also connect with a network of radial or cross-town routes serving schools, housing estates, business centres, the local railway station, various park and ride sites and other important amenities. As they are non-polluting, small scale and accurately steered, they can also run though pedestrian priority areas as well as indoors - for example in shopping centres. The modular design of the Minitram is such that cars can be manufactured in a range of sizes (in terms of length, width and interior seating arrangement) to suit the local operating environment and capacity requirements.

  • Visitor Transit Systems

    TDI has designed a number of unique 'Visitor Transit Systems', or VTS, which is a modern-day, more sophisticated development of the traditional land train concept. Typically a towing vehicle (which can be powered by either electric or combustion engine), is used to pull a series of up to three passenger-carrying trailers. Each trailer has four-wheel steering and is designed to follow precisely in the tracks of the vehicle in front. The total train can carry up to 60 seated passengers and has a minimum turning of 12.8m radius (outer wheels). The carriages are manufactured in aluminium and composites and feature fully powered doors, drop-light windows and a pressure ventilation system to prevent condensation. All are wheelchair accessible and incorporate a passenger announcement facility, along with inductive loop transmitters for the hard of hearing. They can be styled or themed, both inside and out, according to individual customer preferences. In the UK, the VTS can be operated along public highways at no more than 10mph through a Vehicle Special Order (VSO) issued by the VCA. They also require the approval of an inspection body such as ADIPS. Most recently (late 2016), TDI has provided designs for the new land trains now operating in Dubai Parks Resorts.

  • The Next Step

    If you believe that one of these technologies may provide a solution to your transport needs, please contact us straight away. We will be pleased to visit your town/city to understand your requirements first hand, make a presentation, and discuss the methodology for taking a project forward. In most cases, the next step will be to undertake a feasibility study. Typically, this will involve the following process to enable our project team to provide you with a fully budgeted proposal for designing and implementing a complete transit system, or perhaps just providing specific items of equipment and vehicles as appropriate. Alternatively, there is the opportunity for equipment to be manufactured and assembled locally under licence. 1) develop a brief though workshops with client team and stakeholders 2) identify and survey potential transit routes 3) consider environmental and traffic planning issues 4) understand operational and budgetary constraints 5) model route profiles, passenger usage/revenue forecasts 6) define vehicle performance specification 7) define potential infrastructure and civil engineering requirements 8) develop and illustrate conceptual scheme - may involve a number of options 9) identify capital and whole life costing models 10) deliver recommendations/project proposal

  • Coventry Very Light Rail

    TDI is developing an innovative, very light rail vehicle which will be part of a new transport solution for Coventry. It will be a battery-operated, rail-guided vehicle which will ultimately be capable of operating without a driver. The project, funded by the Government’s Local Growth Fund through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP) and the West Midlands Combined Authority Devolution Deal, is being managed by researchers from WMG at the University of Warwick in collaboration between Coventry City Council and Transport for West Midlands. A total of £12.2 million has been secured from the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) Devolution Deal funding to undertake the research and development required to prove the VLR concept. In addition, the WMCA has allocated specialist resource from Transport for West Midlands to provide technical support, advice and guidance to the project team as the scheme develops. The VLR system will be compatible with Midland Metro and the Council will work collaboratively with TfWM to ensure operating systems, branding and information are consistent across the West Midlands. Due for delivery in 2021 (in the year of 'Coventry City of Culture') TDI's prototype vehicle will be capable of carrying 20 seated passengers and a maximum of 70 including standees. It will be tested at the Very Light Rail National Innovation Centre in Dudley before a permanent tracked route is installed across Coventry and a fleet of vehicles manufactured.