The Context

After the installation of a Nor-Ray-Vac system in the high bay and main locomotive shed at Orient Express 28 years ago, the system needed to be replaced.  Orient Express approached Multigas and asked them to assist with the replacement of the existing and also an additional two areas that  were previously unheated.

Entrance and exit doors often occupy the full width of the building and may be left open for many hours a day.  When doors are open at both ends, a wind tunnel effect is created, cold air at high velocity is drawn into the shed.  Keeping the shed warm enough for employees to work comfortably is compounded by the often north-south alignment of the tracks, which allows very little sunshine to warm the interior.

Reznor was able to offer the ideal heating and most effective and economic heating solution.  Blanket heat coverage was not a necessity in the rail shed as only the areas where personnel are working needed to be heated.  When operatives are working on one part of the train, zoning enables all other parts of the radiant heating system to be switched off.  Over time this produces considerable fuel economies and cost reductions.

Economy and effectiveness were the two key criteria specified to be answered when selecting the heating system for the rail maintenance shed.  Finding a solution to both in a single heating system can be challenging.  One form of space heating technology, ideally suited to this cold and inhospitable working environment is the Nor-Ray-Vac radiant tube heating system.

Reznor replaced the old system with the latest Nor-Ray-Vac series system which was happily received by the client due to the past financial benefits of this type of heating system within a train depot environment.


The project was completed in three stages.  Phases One and Two are where the complete rebuild of the carriages takes place for the Orient Express trains and were previously unheated bays.  Phase One, an area of; 41m x 15m and 7m high saw the installation of Nor-Ray-Vac system consisting of 6 x 24kW burners with one flue discharge.  Phase Two, an area of; 30m x 15m and 7m high saw the installation of a Nor-Ray-Vac system consisting of 6 x 18kW burners with one flue discharge.

Phase Three was the high bay and main locomotive shed where the steam locomotives are maintained on a regular basis.  The Nor-Ray-Vac system was an exact replacement of the original to minimise the installation costs.  The client was more than happy to replace the old system with the latest NRV series having experienced the financial benefits of an efficient radiant heating system within a train depot environment. The high bay of area; 30m x 20m and 12m high a Nor-Ray-Vac system of 10 x 18kW burners with one flue discharge was installed going around the perimeter of the bay, below the crane beam. The main locomotive of area; 77m x 15m and 7m high received a Nor-Ray-Vac system consisting of 18 x 18kW burners arranged in three zones with two flue discharges.

The Nor-Ray-Vac system combusts the fuel at the point of use enabling maximum efficiency  with no distribution losses and has rapid response to changed conditions.  It is uniquely designed to accommodate the building constraints and required zoning for the method of working within the shed.  The flexibility of the radiant heating system meant that specific areas can be heated as required by the work patterns within the shed, keeping staff warm.

The client employed the services of Multigas to undertake the complete new and replacement works.  Orient Express now benefits from a radiant heating system capable of maintaining the depot at a comfortable environment well into the late 2030’s.

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