The Norfolk Group’s electrical and communications engineering company O’Donnell Griffin has won a $56 million contract with GE Transportation to design and construct a signalling system for a major rail project in Western Australia.

The new radio-based system will be used on the Fortescue Metal Group’s track duplication project between Port Hedland and the Christmas Creek iron ore mine in the Pilbara. It will be the first rail signalling system to use satellite positioning technology to track train movements on a 294km stretch of railway.

Fortescue says it will enable greater efficiency and flexibility on the track and significantly increase annual tonnage capacity.

O’Donnell Griffin’s contract includes the partial design, fabrication, construction and testing of the radio-based system, as well as commissioning support.

The company’s chief executive Peter Winder says, “This contract is further evidence of O’Donnell Griffin meeting the significant demand for innovative rail signalling technologies, especially from the resources sector. The agreement reinforces the relationship between GE and O’Donnell Griffin, which has been built through our successful work together on a number of large mining and rail contracts.”

The contract includes installation of two control hubs which will allow Fortescue to track trains and control signalling from both its headquarters in Perth and Port Hedland.

Peter Winder says O’Donnell Griffin is well placed to win further potential works associated with the project, including the possible extension of the system to a planned new rail spur for Fortescue’s 155 million tonne per annum Solomon iron ore mine.

O’Donnell Griffin will deliver the works through its specialist rail division. More than 150 staff will work on the project through its design, factory, construction, logistics, testing and administration phases. It’s expected the system will be completed by the end of the year.

Established in 1906, O’Donnell Griffin today employs more than 1800 people operating across 25 locations throughout Australia, New Zealand and Asia. The company specializes in the delivery of design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of electrical and communications systems, offering end-to-end solutions for customers across a broad range of sectors, including rail, power, resources, water, telecommunications and commercial.

www.odg.com.au

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