Innovative emergency lighting system

Norway's Tunnel Builders Rely on Döllken Profiles' Handrail Security System, a Company of the SURTECO Group SE

  • Advanced technology closes safety gaps in tunnels
  • Innovative LED technology for safe and sustainable tunnel lighting

Surface specialist SURTECO ensures greater safety in Norway's tunnels. Safety in tunnels is of paramount importance, especially in the Scandinavian countries. It is therefore understandable that one of the world's first linear multifunctional LED es-cape systems for tunnels was implemented in a project in Norway.

The Handrail Security System is the result of a collaborative partnership led by Proxll AS (Norway), an engineering firm specializing in railway and switch heating systems with extensive experience in the Scandinavian railway sector. Working alongside them are their contractor partner Caverion, the Bane NOR railway operator, and Döllken Profiles (Bönen, Germany), a subsidiary of the SURTECO Group SE.

Jens Hartmann, Key Account Manager at Döllken Profiles, elucidated, "The partner-ship between Proxll and Döllken began in 2014. Leveraging Proxll's reputable stand-ing and expansive network in the Scandinavian market, both Bane NOR, the cus-tomer, and Caverion, the contractor, were immediately impressed by the functionality of the developed system. Consequently, it entered serial production in 2023 and was deployed within the past year." He further remarked, "This rapid implementation not only underscores the effectiveness of the prototype but also emphasizes the signifi-cant demand and urgent need for innovative safety solutions in railway tunnels."

"The remarkable success of the Handrail Security System underscores the unwaver-ing dedication and exceptional performance demonstrated by all project stakehold-ers, coupled with their keen embrace of cutting-edge technologies for the betterment of society," emphasized Håkon Einarsson, Project Manager at Proxll. "Through the remarkable quality, and technical expertise exhibited by Döllken Profiles and Cav-erion, we instilled unwavering confidence in our customers long before the final prod-uct was even completed."

"Döllken contributed expertise in materials, production, and played a pivotal role in the final development phase, addressing client concerns and requests throughout the process," Einarsson added.

"Previously, we made substantial investments of approximately 1 million euros in developing our production infrastructure and material development. These significant steps have enabled Döllken Profiles to now globally produce our innovative product solution in series," explained Martina Baden, Managing Director of Döllken Profiles GmbH, a company of the SURTECO Group.

Closing Safety Gaps in Tunnels
The latest EU regulations require handrails with lighting on escape routes. With Döllken Profiles' Handrail System, tunnel operators can meet these requirements with a single integrated system.

Clear orientation in emergency situations is crucial for safety and can even be life-saving in the event of an emergency. Especially in complete darkness, the im-portance of light as a central factor for reliable orientation becomes apparent.

Given longstanding guidelines and the rapid advancement of LED technology, new solution paths are emerging. Norway, a leader in the Human Development Index, aims to harness these potentials. Advanced LED technology not only promises greater energy efficiency but also flexible lighting design and control. Its integration into tunnel emergency lighting systems can enhance safety, reduce costs, and allevi-ate environmental impact. Moreover, it can be used in small and narrower tunnels to ensure effective lighting and orientation.

World's First Handrail with Three Integrated LED Strips
Döllken Profiles, in collaboration with its development partners, has designed a hand-rail that ensures maximum orientation in emergencies and consists of two compo-nents systemically. In the lower section, there is a mounting bracket along with a ro-bust, fully protected LED strip, illuminating the escape route. The upper part serves as the actual handrail.

A second and third LED strip ensure unambiguous orientation. The so-called Uplight shines towards the tunnel wall, while the Frontlight illuminates towards the tunnel center. All three options are used in the crossing sections, where the emergency ex-its are located.

The Handrail Security System is thus the world's first safety system for tunnels capa-ble of accommodating three LED strips, providing a maximum level of functionality.

Innovative LED Technology for Safe and Sustainable Tunnel Lighting
The advancing LED technology not only offers increased energy efficiency but also enhanced flexibility in terms of lighting design and control. By incorporating these innovations into tunnel emergency lighting systems, not only can safety be improved and energy costs reduced, but also a reduction in environmental impact can be achieved. Additionally, it allows customers to quickly and easily carry out installations and repairs, with fewer cables and reduced downtime, without the need to halt traffic.

In the Norwegian Drammen Tunnel, a total of 14,000 meters of the Handrail Security System were installed and will soon be handed over for use. The new Drammen Tunnel is part of the new double-track line from Drammen to Kobbervikdalen. It is almost 7 km long and consists of approximately 6 km of rock tunnels, 290 m of loose rock tunnels, and 540 m of concrete tunnels.

"At SURTECO, our focus is on continuously developing innovative solutions that not only improve efficiency and enhance safety but also make a sustainable contribution. The technical profiles segment is a strategic growth market for us to enter new appli-cation areas," emphasizes Wolfgang Moyses, CEO of SURTECO Group SE.

The development of the glass fiber-reinforced plastic profile was the responsibility of the engineers at Döllken Profiles, a company specialized in extrusion profiles based in Bönen (a subsidiary of SURTECO Group SE), and their subsidiary Döllken Lighting, which was responsible for the LED technology and is one of the pioneers in the development of durable LED strips.

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