The Railway Technical Website is a website designed to inform and educate about railway technology and operations around the world. This site is maintained by Dr. Piers Connor of PRC Rail Consulting Ltd.

The site is being modernised and updated in stages to provide a better graphical experience for the user and to improve the future ease of updating. The old pages that are not used on the new site will be stored in the site archive.

Although this site is written from the perspective of the UK based railway industry, most of the information is valid for railways internationally.  Differences between UK practices and those in other countries are noted from time to time, if relevant.  Much of the technology is the same, wherever it is used.  What can differ from one system to another, is how the technology is used and how the industry is regulated. We welcome feedback and suggestions for new subjects.

Language and Measurements

British English is used on this site and metric measurements are the norm unless otherwise specified.  On many pages, references are made to systems or technology used in different countries around the world.  Imperial and US measurements are quoted where appropriate.  A list of the more common variations between UK railway language and US railroad language is contained in US-UK Terminology.

Site History

This web site was first opened on 21 January 1998.  It was developed from an Intranet site introduced for a company in South Africa in 1994 to provide a source of information to those interested in the technical aspects of the railway business.  In January 1999, already too big for its original home, it moved to the Trainweb site.  It is now based in its own domain at www.railway-technical.com.

Site Contents

The site map is shown in the box on the left. There are some glossaries, with the contents arranged in alphabetical order, and many articles with diagrams and photos where appropriate.  There are selected links to other technical pages.  There are about 60 separate pages covering a wide variety of subjects.

Site Design

This site is the Internet version of the supermarket "no name" branding.  It's plain and simple.  It has no frills.  It's here for those who are interested in railway technology as a hobby or professionally.   Don't look for flashy graphics or frames.  There aren't any.  There are simple diagrams, some photos and the occasional video and more will be added as the pages develop.


There are regular updates, particularly when people contribute with additions, ideas, pictures, links and any useful suggestions.  Contributions from professionals or transportation experts are welcomed.  If you would like to comment or contribute, contact RTWP here.


All the information presented on this site is verified for accuracy as far as is reasonably practicable and offered in good faith for the interest and information of visitors.  Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and do not represent the views of individuals, authorities, operators or suppliers unless specifically stated.  The author(s) cannot accept responsibility for any loss or inconvenience in whatever form caused by errors or inaccuracies contained herein, nor for any conclusions drawn therefrom.  The author(s) retain copyright.

Privacy Policy

Railway-technical.com will not make use of personal details without permission, except where necessary to supply the services expressly requested. railway-technical.com does not sell, rent, loan, trade, or lease any personal information collected at our site, including membership forms or email addresses.

Information Collected on the Website

Railway-technical.com may collect information related to user's IP address, referral website, repeat visits (using cookies) and pages viewed for statistical purposes. This data does not contain users personal information such as name, email, etc. and is used to analyse our website logs (such as site hits, page views and referral websites). This helps us to constantly improve the value of the materials available on our website. Our website logs are not personally identifiable, and we make no attempt to link them with the individuals that actually browse the site.

Information collected by using cookies

Railway-technical.com may use cookies to track the user's input to the website (e.g., logging what polls are voted by the user). It comprises a list of those services which the visitor has used. We also use cookies to store a visitor's last visit to track returning visitors.

Visitors may disable cookies in their web browsers.

Privacy of Other Submitted Information

Information submitted by users is not displayed if the user requests us not to display the information on our website.

Help and Thanks

This site was originally prepared with original www technical help from Iain Wilkie, the header photo from D. Gubler and railway contributions from the late Paul Berkley, Jonathan Hollahan, Randy Buchter, Al Krug, Nick Cory, Evil Mike, Simon Lowe, Jeff McCabe, Erik Sandblom, Mike Brotzman and Chris Grace.  Many other correspondents have helped with corrections.  

I have included many photos from various sources and photos are credited where possible. Of particular note for good photos are: http://blog.railwaymedia.co.uk/

If you would like to use this information for publishing or commercial reasons, please contact RTWP here.

© The Railway Technical Website 2023