Apprentices from East Anglia Rail Ops made a visit to the workshops of Houghton International, a company which specializes in Electro mechanical engineering. They were presenting a training course titled ‘Introduction to traction motor and MA set repair’ and the aim was to educate these young apprentices in that area. Repairs that the course revolved around highlighted the impact it has the performance and reliability of the rolling stock they maintain.

The training course is a practical hands on workshop. Apprentices will be introduced to the:

  • Repair
  • Maintenance
  • Life extension

of assets in the rail industry.

Houghton International manages best practice when it comes to fault diagnosis, major repair, repair procedures, and general overhaul for traction motors and MA set repair.

The apprentice engineers got a chance to get their hands dirty because the course sessions are presented as a mix of classroom and workshop activities. The students get to see traction motors (AC and DC), MA sets, HST alternators and inductor coils. They were able to get involved in diagnosing faults, carrying out general overhauls and motor rewinding.

One of the apprentices at Greater Anglia, Callum Raywood, really enjoyed the training as he was able to put a lot of learned theory into practice and actually see the components being worked on. He was of the opinion that seeing the machinery close up and being involved in things like fault diagnosis, he gained a better understanding of what it was all about.

The fact that observation and practical application of theories and directions would always be a great source of learning was commented on by Chris Robson, the Sales and Marketing Director, Chris Robson. The young apprentices are working with these machines all day and this will help them to a deeper understanding of what it’s all about.

There is no doubt that people involved in the industry will leave the course with a far greater knowledge and understanding of how to confidently identify faults, understand failure modes and recommend rectification work.

About Houghton International

This British company operates globally in sectors including power generation, renewables, industrial, water, oil and gas, marine and rail.

They specialise in three distinct areas through three Divisions:

  • Electro Mechanical Services which they carry out both in-house and on site.
  • High Voltage Coil Manufacturing
  • Rail – which includes AC and DC traction motors and MA (motor alternator) set repairs.

As a privately owned family company they value their independence and have a culture of innovation and continuous improvement. It’s probably a prime reason for their success.