Test- and Validationcenter Wegberg-Wildenrath
The Test and validation centre, Wegberg-Wildenrath (German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

: Prüf- und Validationcenter Wegberg-Wildenrath) is a railway test centre owned by Siemens Mobility near Wildenrath
Wildenrath is a township within the municipality of Wegberg in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. The town is situated on the Bundesstraße 221 between Wassenberg and Arsbeck on the edge of the Maas-Schwalm-Nette Nature Park and close to the border with the Netherlands.For 40 years, the town was the...

 in North Rhine-Westphalia
North Rhine-Westphalia
North Rhine-Westphalia is the most populous state of Germany, with four of the country's ten largest cities. The state was formed in 1946 as a merger of the northern Rhineland and Westphalia, both formerly part of Prussia. Its capital is Düsseldorf. The state is currently run by a coalition of the...

, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...



The centre is on the former RAF Wildenrath
RAF Wildenrath
The former Royal Air Force Station Wildenrath, commonly known as RAF Wildenrath, was a Royal Air Force military airbase which opened on 15 January 1952. Wildenrath was the first of four 'Clutch' stations built for the RAF in Germany during the early 1950s...

 British military airfield. After the airfield closed in 1992, it was taken over by Siemens who opened the test and validation centre in June 1997. By 2007, the railway test tracks had taken over considerable areas of the airfield, with all but the western threshold and over-run of the runway obliterated. The north-east dispersal is completely taken over by sidings, workshops and loops. Of the southern dispersals, the central and eastern are bisected by the main railway oval test track.

There are ovals of track for testing trains, and various electrifcation systems.


As well as Siemens the test tracks are also used by competitors such as Alstom
Alstom is a large multinational conglomerate which holds interests in the power generation and transport markets. According to the company website, in the years 2010-2011 Alstom had annual sales of over €20.9 billion, and employed more than 85,000 people in 70 countries. Alstom's headquarters are...

 and Bombardier Transportation
Bombardier Transportation
Bombardier Transportation is the rail equipment division of the Canadian firm, Bombardier Inc. Bombardier Transportation is one of the world's largest companies in the rail-equipment manufacturing and servicing industry. Its headquarters are in Berlin, Germany....


There are standard gauge
Standard gauge
The standard gauge is a widely-used track gauge . Approximately 60% of the world's existing railway lines are built to this gauge...

 and metre gauge
Metre gauge
Metre gauge refers to narrow gauge railways and tramways with a track gauge of . In some African, American and Asian countries it is the main gauge. In Europe it has been used for local railways in France, Germany, and Belgium, most of which were closed down in mid 20th century. Only in Switzerland...

 tracks. The facility is used for technical acceptance tests and approvals of locomotives, rolling stock and trams under operating conditions, and personnel training. It has been equipped for trials with Galileo.

External links

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