Birmingham Centre for Railway Research & Education BCRRE


Company overview

The largest academic-based group of its kind in Europe, Birmingham Centre for Railway Research & Education (BCRRE) supports the rail industry with pioneering research, innovation, and education. Its team (which includes more than 180 researchers, academics, and professionals) delivers a growing range of programmes, developed to drive innovation both in the UK and internationally.

The centre is also a lead partner in the UK Rail Research and Innovation Network (UKRRIN), a £92 million project involving the rail industry and academic centres of excellence.

Whether it’s training the next generation of rail engineers or pioneering new technologies, BCRRE works to advance the rail industry.


UKRRIN building facility

Featuring a range of modern research and design spaces, this 3000 m2 facility was developed to facilitate teaching, innovation, and research partnerships. It comprises:

  • Event facilities and seminar rooms.
  • Cyber security lab.
  • Light labs/electronics fabrication.
  • Simulation suite/simulation control room.
  • Railways systems laboratory.
  • Robotics laboratory.
  • Pantograph cell.
  • Test track for scaled hydrogen powered train.

Aerodynamics facilities

Using its specialist facilities (including a wind tunnel and test rig), the university’s train aerodynamic research group undertakes a range of commercial and research projects.

The Rail Accelerator & Innovation Solutions Hub for Enterprise (RaisE)

A unique partnership between the public sector, academia, and industry, RaisE offers a range of facilities for tenants, helping them to become part of the rail supply chain. Its business centre includes:

  • Flexible workshop/office space (available on monthly terms).
  • Conference space.
  • Café.

Enterprise and innovation

BRIC (BCRRE Rail Innovation Cluster)

A range of support programmes, designed for SMES.

UK Rail Research and Innovation Network (UKRRIN)

The University of Birmingham plays host to one of four UKRRIN centres of excellence.

Industry collaborations

A collaborative organisation at heart, BCRRE works closely with companies, academic centres, and trade associations.


BCRRE has founded three rail-focused spinout companies, Vanguard, Enerail, and Monirail.


Centres of Excellence

BCRRE is home to two nationally recognised centres of excellence – the Centre of Excellence in Digital Systems and the Centre of Excellence in Rail Decarbonisation.