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The Life Cycle of Rail Vehicles

Rail vehicles must be safe, reliable and economical. They are procured for a service life of more than 20 years. Over the entire period, not only operators but also passengers expect to be able to rely on the vehicles without any restrictions. For this reason, it is important to develop and operate a vehicle right from the start with great expertise, precisely defined processes and great precision and to take it out of service at some point.

Please have a look at where and in which process steps we provide professional advice and support:

Preparation of tender documents for rail vehicle procurement

When purchasing vehicles, tender documents must be drawn up to enable manufacturers to prepare their bids.

Preparation of a quotation

If a manufacturer wants to participate in a tender, it must first determine whether it is in a position to offer a vehicle that has the required characteristics. If it can make a bid, a quotation must be prepared that not only meets the requirements of the tender, but also meets the manufacturer's technical and commercial conditions.


The development of vehicles requires the cooperation of specialists in various fields. Development engineers design technical solutions, RAM engineers ensure that the vehicle can be operated cost-effectively yet reliably in operation, and safety engineers work to ensure that the required safety objectives are met so that no one is exposed to unnecessary risk from the vehicle. Whether system component or vehicle, GRABAND has the experienced RAM and safety engineers who have extensive project experience in implementing RAM and safety requirements. Our Opus Suite provides the tools to optimize life cycle costs and our experts know how to use the tools.



The plans are finished and the vehicle can now be built. All the parts must now be available on time and correctly assembled. From procurement to assembly, a masterly logistical performance is required.

Testing and validation

Extensive tests must show that the vehicle functions as desired. Even in the event of a defect in a component that is important for safety, it must be demonstrated that a safe response is achieved. All these tests must be defined, planned and carried out. GRABAND has the experience required to create meaningful tests.


Preparation of an expert opinion

The processes applied and the documents created in the process must be evaluated by an assessor. This involves assessing whether the relevant standards have been implemented correctly.

Approval of the vehicle

Once all the work has been completed and all the documents drawn up, the vehicle can be registered. The manufacturer and the licensing authorities must reach the necessary agreements in advance.

Performance check

During regular operation, the reliability, availability and maintainability are compared with the theoretically determined values. The contractually promised performance parameters can thus be verified. In addition, feedback from operation also offers opportunities for product improvement. For many years GRABAND has been competently and successfully assisting its customers in monitoring the performance of their products.


Maintenance of the vehicle

In the course of a vehicle's service life, regular maintenance work is necessary to ensure that the vehicles function safely and reliably. This requires workshop capacities to be kept available, and tools and spare parts must be procured in sufficient quantities. The economic efficiency of the vehicles depends on the organization of maintenance. GRABAND is specialized in the analysis of maintenance solutions to find the optimal balance between maintenance costs and availability.


Decommissioning the vehicle

Vehicles and their components that have reached their service life must be disposed of properly.