Expertise begins with you because, at ABB, your know-how speaks volumes.
In 2010, four years after joining ABB, I asked senior management for the chance to spend six months in Bangalore on a high-level rail project. I was very familiar with the new converter technology we needed to replace in a locomotive that was already under construction. Rail transport is even more important in India than in Switzerland, and people really rely on it. I knew it would be very rewarding to bring over my know-how to this project. In the end, it was a huge technical challenge but a success that’s still felt today.
Another experience I’m really proud of was heading up the technical project management for the Allegra trains. They run on the world-famous Albula/Bernina lines, a lot of the alpine track protected under UNESCO. Even before coming to ABB, I thought that working on these trains would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and here I was, getting the chance. We developed the first dual-voltage trains that could run on both direct and alternating current power, meaning they could travel the whole network without switching the traction vehicle. It was a very ambitious project since the train had to be strong enough to power through snow and ice, never mind the landscape – we’re talking about the steepest adhesion train in Switzerland. We hit a lot of contradictory requirements and challenges that we had to resolve out in nature, with snow all around. At times it was a 24-7 project, but in the end very tangible. My kids say, “Papi, there’s that train you did.” I like that we “do” trains and that I’m working on something we can see, and something used for good.
We’re often up against the laws of physics, but we’ve got the newest technology on our side.
“What’s spectacular is that people come not only to ride the train, but to see what it’s capable of.”
“We solved some major challenges out in nature, right on an alpine pass.”
Design & Engineering
Leading high-level rail projects in Switzerland and beyond
Pascal joined ABB as a control engineer in 2006. Two years later, he was heading the department and began applying his engineering expertise to a series of high-level rail projects in Switzerland and beyond. Between building up the converter business in India and expanding ABB’s entire rail offering in Canada, Pascal acted as technical project manager to design a new generation of trains for one of the world’s most iconic alpine routes. Today, he manages the electrical test and validation phase of major rail projects, near and far.