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NURail Center Key Outcomes
February 17, 2021

A recently designed infographic showcases some of the key outcomes from the creation of the National University (NURail) Center. The NURail Center is a rail-focused seven-university consortium led by the Rail Transportation and Engineering Center (RailTEC) at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. The document demonstrates what a successful collaborative effort can achieve and helps show the impact a university rail center has on the industry. These numbers cover a nine-year period from the Center’s inception in 2012 until the end of federal funding in September 2020. Click here to see the document.

Railway-themed K-12 STEM Outreach Activities
January 19, 2021

While the railroad industry is the leader in long-haul freight transportation in the United States, recruiting students to leadership roles in the industry is challenging. A new Guidebook for Railway-themed K-12 STEM Outreach Activities is now available. It contains descriptions of educational activities designed to introduce students to the railroad transportation mode through the lens of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) concepts. The activities in the manual cover a wide variety of railroad topics and the hands-on activities are intended to provide students with knowledge through experiential learning that also increases their awareness of railway transportation technology. This guidebook was funded by NURail and the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association.

NURail Participation at AREMA 2020
September 18, 2020

Faculty, students, and alumni from NURail partner and affiliate schools participated in the AREMA 2020 Virtual Conference & Expo held September 13 - 17. From giving presentations, participating on panels, and winning poster competitions, NURail was well represented during the conference. The winner of the Undergraduate Student Poster Competition was Walter Friesel from NURail partner school, Michigan Technological University. His poster was titled: "An Analysis of the Effectiveness of Locomotive Horns at Active Grade Crossings". After winning the competition, Walter had the opportunity to talk about his research during a live Q&A session. NURail was also one of 80 exhibitors at the Expo.

Virtual Conference a Success
August 13, 2020

The Virtual Midwest Rail Conference was a resounding success with over 270 participants and 32 interesting and timely presentations. This was the second Midwest Rail Conference and the first as a virtual platform. NURail's Tyler Dick, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), presented "Operational Aspects of Precision Scheduled Railroading" in the first breakout session. Several NURail partners and affiliates were members of the conference planning committee while NURail partners Chris Barkan (UIUC), David Clarke (University of Tennessee, Knoxville) and Reg Souleyrette (University of Kentucky) were conference moderators. The event was held on August 11 - 12 and the theme was "Sustaining Midwest Rail".

Midwest Rail Conference Registration Open
July 8, 2020

Due to COVID-19 concerns, the 2nd Midwest Rail Conference has shifted to a virtual platform. This event will be held on August 11 - 12 from 9:00 am - 1:00 pm (Central Time) and registration is now open. Regular registration before the end of July is only $25 and late registration is $50. The theme for this year's conference is "Sustaining Midwest Rail". The conference features two days of presentations on all things rail, and will include keynote presentations by Mike McClellan, VP Strategic Planning for NS and Joe McHugh, VP State Supported Business Development for Amtrak. A draft program and registration information can be found at at the conference web site here.

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Who We Are

The NURail Center is a rail-focused seven-university consortium led by the Rail Transportation and Engineering Center (RailTEC) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

We are a Tier-1 University Transportation Center (UTC) under the US Department of Transportation (DOT) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology (OST-R) program working to improve and expand rail education, research, workforce development, and technology transfer.

Members of the consortium are:

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
University of Illinois at Chicago
    College of Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Michigan Technological University
University of Kentucky
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology


NURail Center
1239B Newmark Engineering Laboratory, MC-250
205 N. Mathews Avenue
Urbana, IL 61801

Tel: (217) 300-1340
Fax: (217) 333-9464