Established in 1948, REHAU is a leading systems and service provider for polymer-based solutions. By combining strong development capabilities with a decentralised sales structure and service excellence, REHAU has become one of the top providers in the market. The highest levels of professionalism, from material development through to manufacturing, together with a passion for the unlimited potential of polymers, have led to its global reputation as a premium brand.

Polymer solutions for the railway industry

REHAU is known in the railway industry for its design and development expertise and ability to transfer materials development, surface technology and system design from its automotive, building solutions and industrial divisions to the rail sector. The company’s aim is to provide value-adding, weight saving solutions.

From traditional products to polymer solutions

With more than 35 years experience in supplying advanced polymer solutions to railway systems globally, the REHAU rail product portfolio offers polymer alternatives to traditional rail components.

Patented height adjustable GRP insulator

Designed in partnership with Network Rail and Transport for London, the REHAU Patented height-adjustable GRP (glass reinforced plastic) insulator was developed as a replacement for the traditional porcelain insulator.

After a trial in Brighton with Railtrack, the product was fully endorsed and the first 1000 units were delivered in 2001 for installation at specific locations across the south.

The key benefits of the rail insulator come from REHAU’s ability to process polymers in ways that derive real benefits for its customers, transferring technologies not only from country to country but also across business divisions.

The company looked at the traditional porcelain version, which had been in use for more than 100 years, and realised that it could produce a more cost-effective, lightweight, impact resistant GRP version.

GRP is also a safe, inert material impervious to water and all chemicals routinely used on the track, so it is durable and long lasting.

REHAU brought a fresh perspective to the insulator and was able to develop an advanced contemporary solution to a traditional problem, enabling a low maintenance railway.

REHAU’s insulators are approved for both over ground and low smoke fume underground applications.

Protective boarding

Designed and developed for the railway industry, REHAU Protective boarding is used where there is a risk of rail staff coming in contact with a live conductor rail, or where a signal rail needs protection from the application of a short circuit bar. REHAU provides this highly visible yellow PVC boarding as an alternative to traditional wooden boarding.

Manufactured in a high impact resistant, self-extinguishing PVC material, it is flexible enough to be installed on curved track where required. It is positioned quickly and easily using specially developed mounting clips which significantly reduce installation time when compared with wooden boarding and eliminate the need for power tools.

REHAU’s protective boarding provides significant advantages over the wooden alternative, largely as a result of the lightweight nature and durability of the polymer used in its manufacture.

It has full product acceptance for use at S&C locations and at sites where tamping or rail grinding is not undertaken, such as in sidings, depots or stations.

It can also be simply and safely installed on both 106lb/yd and 150lb/yd conductor rails.

Rail shroud and split ducts

REHAU Rail shrouds are designed for installation at ramp ends and at other locations prone to rubbish accumulation beneath the foot of the rail which are at risk of an electrical short circuit.

Approved by Network Rail, the REHAU Conductor rail shroud has been designed to fit around the foot of 100lb, 106lb and 150lb conductor rails and to extend up towards the underside of the head. It provides excellent insulated protection from a short circuit.

Manufactured from high visibility, impact resistant, self-extinguishing PVC, the Conductor rail shroud can be installed quickly and easily without the need for power tools.

REHAU also supplies Split cable ducting, which can be fitted without the need to disconnect and reconnect the cable.

Rail drainage systems

REHAU is increasingly active in rail drainage. The REHAU RAUSIKKO and RAUDRILL RAIL products are storm water management systems which have been proven in the general civil engineering sector.

RAUSIKKO RAIL is a modular solution to the issue of storm water management which REHAU believes could only be achieved in polymer. The blocks, which are moulded from polyethylene, have three times the water storage capacity of gravel, and the capability to allow very high volumes of storm water to penetrate and accumulate before being drained away safely. The blocks can be installed as traditional trench drains or trough-infiltration systems, with all the appropriate infiltration pipes, inspection systems and manholes.

RAUDRILL RAIL complements the RAUSIKKO RAIL product. This is a solid-walled polypropylene drainage pipe – designed for high loading in railways and tunnel construction. Designed for applications where high service life and functionality are vital, ground water comes into the pipe through slits along its length and is carried along the pipe to a suitable drainage location.

One of the biggest advantages of REHAU’s drainage solutions is their lightweight but robust construction. This brings significant benefits in terms of installation when compared for example to concrete drainage channels which are heavy and cumbersome. Traditionally, mechanical lifting equipment has been required for installation of concrete drainage products, and this can cause major problems on sites where access and space are limited. Additionally, the presence of a road/rail crane on a site will necessitate a possession to close the line. By comparison RAUSIKKO and RAUDRILL can be lifted and installed manually, thereby eliminating the need for cranes and the associated line closure. Furthermore, because these products are manufactured from tough polymer they will not fracture in the same way as concrete.

Expanding the boundaries of polymer solutions

Jobst Wagner, president of the board of directors, said: ‘Every day, we redefine the boundaries of what is possible with polymer-based solutions.’

Whether a customer’s requirement is simple or complicated, and the materials of manufacture current or require a special formulation, REHAU has the global resources, design skills and technical know-how to complete the project. The REHAU philosophy is simple, Challenge us Today!

REHAU at Railtex 2013

REHAU invites rail professionals visiting Railtex 2013 to see for themselves the high-tech reinvention of traditional rail components in polymer. Visit us on Stand J100.

For more information: Tel: 01989762655 or visit