University of Birmingham


Birmingham B15 2TT

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The Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education (BCRRE) provides fundamental scientific research, knowledge transfer and education to the international railway community. 

We have a multi-disciplinary approach bringing together expertise from across the University of Birmingham, industry, other universities (through Rail Research UKA), and international partners to provide innovative solutions to meet the challenges of the future.  With extensive, cutting edge facilities and over 130 academics, researchers and professional support staff, the BCRRE delivers world class research and thought leadership within railways and offers an expanding portfolio of high quality education programmes to develop the railway leaders of the future.

We take a system wide view of Railways, researching in all aspects of railway technology and operation and have built a world-class reputation in the following areas:
  • Traffic Management and Operations simulation
  • Power and Energy
  • Railway Data Integration and Cybersecurity
  • Climate Change and Extreme Weather
  • Condition Monitoring and Sensing
  • Railway Aerodynamics

Birmingham invests in the brightest academic minds to ensure we remain at the leading edge of research. Under the guidance of our internationally respected researchers, our many PhD students are preparing to tackle the challenges of tomorrow and become the next generation of experts and leaders in railways research and development.

Our education programmes are delivered by academics and industrialists to blend theory with practice and are producing the next generation of “system thinking” railway engineers and professionals who will be at the forefront of transforming what railways offer in the future.

Currently we educate over 350 students a year and offer the following educational programmes:

Undergraduate programmes:

BEng / MEng Electrical and Railway Engineering
BEng / MEng Civil and Railway Engineering

Postgraduate programmes:

MSc Rail Systems Engineering and Integration
MSc Rail Risk and Safety Management
MSc Electrical Transportation Systems
MRes Railway Systems Integration
MSc Rail Asset Management (from 2017)
MSc Railway Communication and Control Systems (from 2107)

We also deliver a significant amount of CPD education though either open access to our course modules or as course tailored to company requirements.

Our expanding International work delivers world class railway research and education in key locations around the globe through partnerships with leading international academic institutions and industrial organisations that leverage the knowledge, skills and leadership of BCRRE. 

Our international research and education collaborations include:
  • Federal Railroad Authority / University of Illinois Urbana Champaign (USA)
  • SMRT and the Land Transport Authority (Singapore)
  • Anhui Provincial Government / Hefei Metro (China)
  • Zhejiang University /Lloyds Foundation Rail (China)
  • Central Japan Railways / University of Tokyo (Japan)
  • Guangzhou Municipal Government / Guangzhou Metro (China)
  • Beijing Municipal Government / Beijing Metro / Beijing Jiaotong University (China)
  • SNCF / Ecole des Ponts ParisTech (France)

We are always looking to develop further international collaborations and would be delighted to answer any enquiries to explore how these could be created.
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