Cab-front cleaning robot

Cab-front cleaning robot

Cranfield University & Heriot-Watt University

With support from Chiltern Railways, Bombardier and Shadow Robot Company


Cranfield University subsequently secured KTP funding, in partnership with Garrandale Ltd, a UK based company which designs and manufactures various systems for the UK railway industry (including carriage wash systems), for a research associate to refine the design and develop a full-scale prototype.


This project has developed a prototype robot for train cab front cleaning. The project designed and constructed a prototype for a low-cost, robust and easy-to-use semi-autonomous robot that can wash the cab front nose and body-end panels between carriages; eliminating unsafe working conditions and improve efficiency at depots.

The method was to design a machinal robot arm using kinematics dynamics analyses. The selected designed used an XYZ Cartesian gantry that holds a rotating brush end effector. A 1/8 scale model of the system was built to demonstrate the capabilities of the system.

Reports and Research in Brief

Cranfield University
Heriot-Watt University