Jan. 1, 2004
Siemens Energy & Automation's Exider technology train kicks off a 10-city, coast-to-coast tour Feb. 23 at the National Manufacturing Week (NMW) trade

Siemens Energy & Automation's Exider technology train kicks off a 10-city, coast-to-coast tour Feb. 23 at the National Manufacturing Week (NMW) trade show in Chicago.

The 1,000-foot train provides a high-tech platform to showcase Siemens' products, solutions and services. Jammed with technology, the 14 rail cars house 224 plasma screens and monitors, 189 DVD players, four servers, nine miles of electrical cables and almost two miles of data lines.

Rolling coast-to-coast, the “trade show on rails” will put all that technology to use to simulate specific customer applications in pharmaceutical and chemical industries, automobile manufacturing, commercial power distribution and other customer sectors.

For instance, in the process automation section, visitors will pass through a tube (see adjacent photo) where different process industry planning steps are demonstrated using animated video installations. Later, visitors will find themselves in a simulated control room, overseeing the entire production process in realistic detail.

The first stop in Chicago will be the only stop the rolling exhibit will come off its wheels. The nine exhibit cars that normally travel by rail will be brought into Chicago's McCormick Center. NMW's anticipated 30,000 exhibit attendees can visit “cars” dedicated to such customer themes as process and discrete manufacturing, machine tool components, commercial and residential power distribution and engineering services.

The train's planned tour stops include: Atlanta, March 16-17; Washington, D.C., March 22; New York, March 24-25; Boston, March 29-30; Detroit, April 2; Houston, April 7; Los Angeles, May 14; San Francisco, May 18; and Seattle, May 24.

Since its rollout in Europe in 2002, the Exider has toured more than 120 cities in 22 countries and hosted more than 100,000 visitors, including its most recent 16 city, three-month tour of China.

The U.S. goal is to board more than 15,000 carefully selected guests who make purchasing decisions as engineering constructors, contractors, consulting engineers, OEMs, government agencies and industrial and system integrators.

“It's an ambitious ‘rolling exhibition’ that has been successful in every country it has toured,” said John Dimmerling, Siemen's Energy & Automation director of marketing communications. “Siemens' technology base is so broad, we even provide some of the drives used by the train's locomotive. If we tried to feature all the technologies that Siemens makes, this train would be miles long.”

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