Surface Engineering
Designing the railway of the future.

The project:

The overall aim of the Mat4Rail project is to lay the foundation for the next generation of rail vehicles to secure Europe´s raiwasys industries global competitiveness by:

– Reducing train weight by replacing metal parts with Fibre Reinforced Polymers (FRPs).
– Increasing capacity and passenger comfort via built-in modularity of train interior design.

To achieve this aims, Mat4Rail is divided into two work streams:

Work Stream I: Materials aims to develop FRPs that meet all the railway environment requirements regarding Fire, Smoke and Toxicity, mechanical performance and cost effective manufacturing, to developed structural joints for FRPs, and to innovate the access door system.

Work Stream II: Interior Design addresses the challenges and shortcomings of current rolling stock in terms of modularity in use, to meet the changing passenger demand during the 30-40 years of an in-service operating life-cycle of a train.


The consortium of the Mat4Rail project comprises16 organisations from 7 European countries. It is composed by leading scientists from five research institutions (CIDETEC, AIMPLAS, ITAINNOVA, RISE and CENTEXBEL) , and market leaders from ten relevant industries and highly innovative SMEs (HUNTSMAN, GRAMMER, ASAS, COEXPAIR, IMADRESDEN, NVGTR, ESCATEC, SPIRIT DESIGN, INDAT and ACCELOPMENT) . It assembles experts in engineering and materials research, as well as industrial and product design and enables an efficient industry-academia collaboration to make a significant contribution to the railway of the future.

Our role:

The role of CIDETEC, in addition to the coordination of the project, is closely linked to the design of resins and composites that meet rail requirements, in close collaboration with the AIMPLAS, University of Bremen and the manufacturer of resins HUNTSMAN , as well as with the Belgian Centre CENTEXBEL, expert infibers. These materials will be tested in a specific work package led by the Swedish Technology Center RISE.

The experience of the Polymers and Composites Unit in the development of new resins and composites, as well as the good European positioning of CIDETEC (currently participating in 20 H2020 European projects, 6 of them as coordinators) together with the experience of the other 15 partner mentioned, will be very relevant to the achievement of these objectives.


Inicio: 01 | 10 | 2017

Fin: 30 | 09 | 2019

Presupuesto: 3.500.000 €


Logo Financiador

Mat4Rail has received funding from the Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 777595.


  • Ferrocarril

Campos tecnológicos

  • Termoplásticos sostenibles

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